Visiting Hours

May of 2009 ended my senior year of college which means I have been out of college longer than I was in college.  Guh.  Eight years after my freshman year and now my baby brother is in his freshman year at my very own alma mater.  It was his decision to go and probably has absolutely nothing to do with me, but I’m so proud I could squeeze him to pieces.  While pretending his decision to go has everything to do with me.  

After waking up with no alarm, hip-hip-hooray for that, I did a quick two miler with John and got ready to escape the Island because my baby broseph was in town and I needed to squeeze him to pieces.  We hit the road for a scenic, and beautiful, 2 hour drive north to spend some quality time with my family.

So what do you do when you travel to see your family? My family eats.  First stop, lunch.  There is this place in my town that has obscene breakfast foods.

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So obviously, when faced with obscene breakfast foods get the craziest one… behold, a canoli pancake.

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me, brother, mom

me, brother, mom

The rest of the afternoon we spent making fun of each other and being ridiculous- There is no other way.  Thankfully the middle child wasn’t there or it would have been a slaughterhouse of mockery.  We are mean to each other in the only way siblings can be, with love.  I did get to help my brother with an improv skit he has to do for an acting class.

Assignment:

you are doing something in a rush. props needed.

So, behold.  Me teaching my youngest brother how to apply makeup.  He will be playing a girl getting ready for a first date.

mpc3mpc4mpc5mpc9mpc7mpc6     Perfect way to end the weekend.  

Perfect way to start the week.

CHAMPIONS!

Like everything, the Electric Run (see here: It’s Electric!) came and went. When my friends and I first took our leap of faith into running this run plagued me. We all had irrational fears associated with running- that were just that, irrational.  I have been changed entirely from revamping my life.  

So how did I get here?  I’ll explain it in steps.  

  • 3 years of complaining about a lack of motivation to get my ass to the gym + awesome unhealthy food choices (I could convince you that french fries should be their own food group.)  
  • 1 Lupus Flare
  • 3 Doctors visits 
  • 1 week not walking 
  • 20 days for $20 at a hot yoga studio
  • 4 inspirational friends
  • 30 days for $30 Bikram yoga
  • 1 ticket to the Electric Run 
  • 1 month of running
  • 4 days a week, 2 miles a day – minimum 

Some say you can form a habit after 21 days- this is based on empirical evidence, meaning based on experience, not clinical, or based on controlled experiments.  Based on my own empirical evidence- running is now a habit.  It’s what I do. There is always time for a quick run.  Everything else in my life just followed and became the way things are- french fries are taking a back seat, I drink less coffee than when I started, I have more overall energy, I’m a happier person. 

When I put everything in bullet form I realize it looks fairly simple, and it was once I started.  The hardest part was starting.  Blogging and talking about my decisions made this all even easier.  I felt like I had people genuinely supporting me- thank you.  

So now for the Electric Run.  I can’t even tell you how much fun we all had- Here’s the rest of the blog in photo form. 

20130928-095727.jpgmy hairdo for the night courtesy of my yoga champion of a friend, Jess.

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Getting there was not the easiest, but we figured it out… we were just some kids from the ‘burbs navigating Brooklyn

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School buses awaited us as we got off the subway at Brooklyn College.  We rode in with a bunch of other neon fools to Floyd Bennett Field. Every time we pass this place John tells the same story about how the planes were used King Kong.  Now he will have a new story for the grandkids.

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How did I win my mohawk you ask? Well, I won a one footed hula-hooping contest.  Thank you yoga.20130928-095712.jpgpre-race, war painted faces. Best friends since high school.  Still kicking it over 10 years later.

20130928-095746.jpg20130928-095733.jpg20130928-095752.jpg20130928-095720.jpgSo should you do a fun race? Yes. Definitely.  We chose to run and to stop and take pictures every once in a while.  This wasn’t a race- I run every day. I’ve said it before, but my friends and I all had our own personal goals.  This was an experience we all got to share in together. 

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And yes, we did run through the finish line holding hands. I can’t ask for better people to have in my life. 

My Christmas!

So the big day is here! It’s 5k day my friends, and I’m feeling good. This week I did 2 days of running and three days of hot yoga. When I started this blog the THOUGHT of completing one mile was paralyzing. Here I am, ready to start my weekend with my closest friends by my side. I did it!

See you all on the other side of the finish line!

Yoga Flow

I love yoga.

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I love it to the point that I’m annoying about it.  I’ll admit it.  I will just talk your ear off about why everyone should do it at least once.

Even if they suck.

I feel qualified to say that because the thing is… I’m not very good at it.  (Crow, hell no.)

And even though I can do little more than a half-assed cobra, I keep going back.  Maybe it’s the personal challenge of it all- it’s something that you can clearly see growth in.  That moment when a posture just clicks feels like an unbelievable breakthrough that words cannot describe.  

I was not an athlete. ever. There were two defining moments in my life that made me this way (oh, I believe we are the way we are for very specific events that happened in our life.)  Both occurred when I was nine- gym class, fourth grade, I was picked last in dodge-ball.  What a crappy feeling.  Was I that bad in it? Or did my peers just not like me that much? It didn’t matter- all I know is that it hurt. The second time I was in a sports camp (isn’t it ironic– dontcha think?) My cousin and I were taking the deep water swim test where they label you a guppy, minnow, or dolphin.  I was labeled a minnow, my cousin was a dolphin.  I couldn’t swim in the deep end guys!  It was then that I decided I must be a terrible swimmer.  Swimming became an embarrassment to me.  And even though these events were so minuscule in the grand scheme of my life, they impacted me and my self perception so profoundly.   

By the time I was in eighth grade I was terrified of failure in sports.  I couldn’t stand to be bad at something in front of my peers.  I am aware that this is typical of many youths to have silly insecurities, but this is still something I struggle with and have been diligently working on.  I would want to try out for teams, but that voice in the back of my head was the loudest in the room- you suck and you can’t do a layup. You are a slow runner.  You have no coordination. By the way, I grew up in a very supportive and loving environment that was actually telling me I could do anything I set my mind to.  This was just my own set of crazy.  

So what did this all boil down to?  At the end of the day it was fear of failure.  I guess no one enjoys failure.  I was just particularly bad at it.  It wasn’t until my junior year of college that I realized that failing is acceptable and in many cases an excellent learning experience.  It has been a quest of sorts to come to terms with failure and to let it in every once in a while.  How much did I miss out on because of this fear?  To name a few things- volleyball teams, lacrosse, soccer, theater in college.  I can’t go back in time and yell at myself.  I can only learn from these mistakes and grow.  

This year has been a year of self discovery and personal growth.  I never want to be the person who isn’t dancing because I’m afraid of what people are thinking.  I want to live without these reservations because life is short.  One day I got out of bed and I was 25- and I don’t know how I got here.  

So this post was about yoga but I got very side tracked- I got here because yoga was always something I felt comfortable in.  I just felt like I belonged.  I could sit in a room. Close my eyes. OM. Say namaste and mean it.  Maybe it’s the people that go to yoga- maybe we are all there for similar reasons.  Maybe we are on a personal journey, mission, exploration of self.  I don’t know.  But when I think about yoga it makes me smile because it changed me and it has allowed me to become the person that I have always been inside.  

I don’t care if I suck at kickball.  I joined two leagues.  Volleyball?  Sign me up.  Oh, and sorry, I can’t serve the ball but I promise I’ll get better by the end of the season.  Running? 5K this Friday!  

Tomorrow I start doing hot yoga again and I’m super excited about it.  Can you tell?!

Don’t allow anyone to make you feel like you can’t do something.  Even if you can’t, who cares?

Am I done crying yet?

After my morning post on true life: I got burned for beauty I realized that I needed a good therapy session of running.  I was allowing the pain to be an excuse, and who doesn’t love a good excuse to mindlessly watch The Flinestones movie on a bleak Saturday morning?

Don’t get me wrong, I listen to my body, if I’m in pain or not feeling well I’m not going to push myself to the point of no return.  After this past week of exhaustion, a cold, and leg burns, I clearly needed the rest.  This morning I was ready.

I got out to the boardwalk and began my stretch.

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Right as the perfect song came on, I set up my running app, I was about to go, and out of nowhere the devil began to beat his wife.  Too much?  Guys! I didn’t make this up!  

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Decision time.  Is this a sign? Should I go home? Wait it out? I began to walk home, but something hit me. I am not the wicked witch. maybe. I wont melt.  Turn back around- have some pride, woman!

And just like that the rain stopped. 

I decided to appreciate the run. Forget time, distance, take it all in.  On my run I saw a couple taking their wedding photos, I was the weirdo who screamed “CONGRATULATIONS!” and you could see how their love warmed the whole boardwalk. People smiled as they passed them.  There was a positive energy that everyone was sharing.  

As I was running I saw a man in a walk for lupus shirt.  I was the weirdo (again) who stopped him- I had to.  Turns out he’s on the board for lupus research in Long Island.  His wife was diagnosed when she was 25. Just last year at the age of 55 she needed a kidney transplant and he was her donor.  She is doing great.  The stories you can hear from strangers when you take a minute out of your day sometimes amaze me.

The rest of my run was amazing, relaxing, and wonderful.  I got off the boardwalk after 2 miles.  Switched my Pandora station to Jack Johnson and sat down by the water.  It’s nice to stop and take life in.

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Today I felt tranquil for the first time in a long time.  Happy Saturday everyone,  Enjoy the day!

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Laser skin Removal

Oh, I’m sorry… Did I say skin? Yes. I did.

They say pain is beauty, and as women, it can be. We tweeze, wax, wear heels, and modify our bodies continuously in a quest for some perfection that we as a society have created ourselves. I said we because I am absolutely a part of this quest and the truth is, I love things that are “beautiful”. I enjoy clothes, and makeup, and hair, and all things shiny and pretty. But at what expense people?!

As much as I love being a girl there are some greatnesses of manhood. No makeup. No tweezing. No real beautification. Any shaving a man does cannot match the length of two legs and whatever else we as women are expected to maintain.

This past year I looked into laser hair removal because I am lazy and if I never have to shave my legs again, good riddance. I met with a representative at Ideal Image and asked every question I could think of. There was no way I was walking out of there with something signed. I like to know what I’m getting myself into. I decided to wait it out because the cost was very pricey and I also wondered if I could swindle them down a bit. A few weeks later, and numerous phone calls from their reps (very obnoxious) they lowered the cost by 10% if I signed “right now”! I am such a sucker. Either way I did the math and figured that it would pay itself off by the time I reach 88, a little incentive to live a little longer? I rushed in and signed my name on the dotted line. And again. And again. And again. And don’t forget this line over here too. Was I selling my soul to the devil for this?

Since the goal of this post is to discuss my fifth appointment, I will answer the two questions that I believe are pertinent to this post.

but what’s your pain tolerance? you may be thinking, I’ve had kids! I can take on any amount of pain!
I have a very high pain tolerance for real pain. Low tolerance for things like paper cuts and bee stings. If I am truly in pain I suck it up and deal with it. Laser hair bring it on.

so, does it hurt?
Yes. Do not let the cute sales representative fool you. I never screamed, twitched, or cried on the table, but it hurts. If you have ever had a tattoo, imagine that, but worse. If you have never had a tattoo go watch someone getting a tattoo, imagine it’s worse. One nurse did tell me that a young girls mother had to “hold her down” while she was getting it done. Which I cannot imagine being legal on many levels.

So let me take you to Wednesday, September 18 at approximately 4:20 pm. This is my fifth appointment. The people are friendly and welcoming. I have a bottle of water in one hand and a coffee in the other by the time I sit down. Which I do drink. Gotta get my money’s worth out of these people. I am greeted by an awesome boho-esque nurse who introduces herself to me and we hit it off right away. I like to talk to the nurses the whole time because it keeps me distracted from the extraordinary amounts of pain I am feeling. It’s the kind of pain that makes you sweat. I noticed it was painful, but I just told myself to be quiet, suck it up, it’s almost over. Which I did. Until the car ride home.

I knew it was bad immediately because I called Danielle and told her I was dying. Yes, I know I can be a little melodramatic, but I needed to talk to someone.

me danielle, I think I am dying.

d since I don’t remember what she actually said I’m going to assume she scoffed at this because I say it a lot

me I’m so hot. I need to take my pants off.

d don’t take your pants off. Keep your pants on. You’re driving.

This conversation actually happened. By the time I got home my boots were in the passenger seat, my pants were rolled up to my knees, my button down was thrown in the backseat. I crawled through the front door of my place and laid on the kitchen floor because it was cold.

When I called Ideal Image their response was accusatory and not very helpful. They said that I must have been tanning. I explained that because of my lupus not only do I constantly wear sunblock, but I also avoid prolonged sun exposure. Well, you signed. You knew the risks associated with laser hair removal.

I passed out by 8 p.m. A full burn can really tire a person out. Have I run at all? No. Not at all. The pain makes walking difficult and even my legs touching the bed hurts. Forget wearing pants. maxi dresses all week it is. Needless to say, I am not too pleased.

The whole plan is paid for, no money back, no stopping treatments. I have already paid for 4 more sessions. Truth be told, I love the idea of laser hair removal. I love the ease that it brings to my life, but is it all worth it? No. Ladies, here is my warning. You heard it here. Not from someone getting paid to convince you it’s great. And gentlemen, remind your special woman, or woman of the future, how crazy we can be for the price of beauty but how you love us regardless.

Do you need more convincing.

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These pictures were just taken. 2 days later, 2 days of healing. They are currently scabs and blisters if you really want to know.

Running Apps

I have already written about my love of mapmyrun.com. It’s great not only because it tracks my miles, route, and calories burned, but it also gives me regular updates on my progress.

New app option?

http://www.charitymiles.org/

I am officially amazed. Who comes up with these things?! Technology, sometimes you suck, but lately you have been killing it. Just check out charitymiles, watch the video, and give it a shot. Charity miles donates 10 cents per mile biking and 25 cents per mile running. If running and biking aren’t exactly your “thing,” knowing that you are donating to an important cause might be the motivation you need.

Truth be told, I like to purchase new gym clothes to give myself additional support in the get your butt out the door part of my life. Who doesn’t love breaking in their new cool sports bra or sneakers – amiright?! Downloading this app is giving me that same little kid, I want to play with my new toy, feel. Now I don’t even need to spend money to motivate myself, I just get to download this app and GIVE money to charity.

You get to…
Run
Bike
Get fit
Get healthy
Achieve success
Attain a goal
Motivate
Inspire
And most importantly,
Help.

Win, win?! Let’s try it out! Happy Tuesday!

Tales of a Domesticated Goddess

So this will be a quick post because I don’t have much to say on this subject.

Tonight I was determined to be a working woman who is also a domesticated goddess. After work I popped into the super market to pick up some dinner essentials. I bought an array of food stuffs and mentally planned a few diverse meals. This was necessary considering John and I literally ate chicken every lunch and dinner last week in an effort to cleanse our un-pure bodies from the mass amounts of junk we usually eat.

just some of our chicken from last week.  we cooked more after this picture was taken.

just some of our chicken from last week. we cooked more after this picture was taken.

Upon arriving home I decided tonight would be a zesty garlic with chili seasoning tilapia night. Let’s pretend it was me who seasoned the tilapia and not Trader Joe’s. I followed the directions for how to cook tilapia from on the package and popped that little fish into the broiler… For 12 minutes.

While I was destroying broiling dinner I decided to put in a load of laundry. Because I am a working woman who is also a domesticated goddess. To create a visual for you just imagine me throwing things into the washing machine paying no attention to materials or colors. I arrived back in my apartment just in time to see my concerned neighbor staring at my apartment as the smoke alarm blared from the windows. No worries, just a little smokey inside…back to my dinner cooking.

Now I got to the hardest part of the meal to plan. Should I put the broccoli steam fresh bag into the microwave first or the brown rice steam fresh bag? Decisions. I decided on the broccoli because it takes longer.

Here’s the thing, I wanted to surprise John because he has been working a lot lately and me as a domestic goddess would be surprising. I have dedicated years to my career and John has been more than understanding. He has picked up the slack for me numerous times and now that he is the busy one I wanted to be there for him.

Just as I heard the door unlock, dinner was ready. I got the plates out, began to set everything up, pulled the fish out of the broiler… And this is what I found.

tilapia

oh. the horror. it was not supposed to be blackened.

Guys! I killed the fish. Again. And we painfully ate it. We actually decided it wasn’t the worst meal we have had. However, it was the second worst.

I then went to get the clothes from the dryer. Redemption? I SHRUNK JOHN’S CLOTHES!

Thank goodness he loves me for exactly what I offer in this relationship because being a domestic goddess is not it. I have not quit the idea of goddess-hood.  Maybe there is potential in me somewhere, i’ll just save this whole domestication thing for a rainy day.

IT’S MY BLOGIVERSARY!

Remember when you had your first relationship and you celebrated every month?  Well, my blog, happy one month blogiversary!

Putting my thoughts into the blogisphere for the past month has been therapeutic to say the least.  I have always felt fulfilled and happy by the things I do and the people I surround myself with, however, this blog almost feels like the missing piece of it all.  I could never identify something that I considered a “hobby” of mine.  I knew I felt good about my life, but I felt as though I didn’t have things that I did for myself because I enjoyed it.  I can now say I have developed hobbies that are mine.  

I’m not getting 1,000 likes, I don’t have 100+ people following me, hell, I’m not even sure if people are actually reading this thing, but still, this blog makes me push myself in more ways than I thought were possible.

Like a beautiful new relationship, this blog and I are going to get closer with each and every passing month until we sicken the people around us.  

So, what is this blog all about, 52 miles per month… and the results are in!  

Type # Maps Distance Duration Calories
Run / Jog 29 14 60.0 mi 5.29 h 3,161 kCal

These are my recorded stats for running, 60 miles this month!  I have nothing to say but WOO!  Happy Monday!