Monday, August 24, 2015

What have I been doing?

I'm sure there are scores of rabid fans wanting the answer to that question...well, here we are! Sorry to take a four month hiatus. Oops.

In June I purchased a $100 30 day introductory package from Pure Barre. I've taken (and loved) barre classes before; my first experience was a few months of Go Figure in the summer of 2013. This style of workout is intense, hard and gives results. It's also pretty stupid expensive. I ended up stopping Go Figure classes because my membership at the Village Clubs offered barre classes and I decided I didn't need to pay extra, but those group ex classes were definitely more "dance-y/ballet-y" than stereotypical "barre-y." Picture me reacting to order of "Plie! Tendu! Battement!" and then pick yourself off the floor from laughing.

Anyway, Pure Barre is freaking hard. I can't really decide which technique I like better between the two. PB just works better for my schedule because they have early (5:45 a.m.) classes and are a little closer to where I live. I haven't purchased another package because they are freaking expensive, but I DID sign up for a free class this past Saturday in celebration of their 5 years in AZ. I entered a raffle to win 6 months of classes for free because, why not?! I'm sure I didn't win, but you can't really pass the chance up.

I've also incorporated at least one hot yoga classes into each week. If I said barre classes are tough, hot yoga classes are like going into battle. But the drenched feeling of getting completely detoxed after each session is enough to keep me reeled in. I've been attending Lauren's Village Hot Yoga 5:30 a.m. classes (waking up at 4:45 a.m is rough, just in case you weren't sure.) on Wednesdays. I love her. VHY is a set list of poses throughout each session, which I hear is like Bikram, but without a creepy guy in a man-diapy leading the class, apparently. I also like to see how many towels I can accumulate throughout each class. My record is two full-length body towels and 5 hand towels. A fun game!

I can't believe last year at this time I was training for my second half marathon. Was I huffing glue or what?

(She is my #1 Intervention fave.)

It is DISGUSTING lately. It's hot and muggy. I was running about 7 miles at this time last year. No thank you.

What else? Not much. I may attempt to keep up with this. Oh! Just a little aside/FYI/oopsie-daisy: I eat meat again now. I've been having some stomach issues for about the past year and a half now and started reading up on the Low FODMAPS diet.

Yes, all the things on that list are the ones to be avoided/used sparingly on Low FODMAPS. Kill me now, right? Luckily, I got tested for Celiac and don't have any gluten sensitivity. There are other foods on that list I know don't effect me, but I ended up cutting out ones who have straight up wrecked havoc on my insides. (See: Apples. *insert crying emoji with angry fist to god*) In taking out a lot of my protein sources (beans/lentils), I really didn't see much of a choice. And I have noticed an improvement, for sure. Right now I'm sticking with just chicken/turkey a few times a week. Still dicey on red meat (if AV offers me a bite of something he says I simply CANNOT miss out on, like the tri-tip sandwich from Twisted Grove, then I will try it), and still a no on pork. 

That's all for now. I leave you with a line of poetry after seeing Straight Outta Compton this weekend. Incorporate it into your daily life: When you diss Dre you diss yourself.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Stitch Fug

A non-workout entry...

Unless you live under a rock, you've heard of Stitchfix. You pay a $20 styling fee and fill out an extensive questionnaire based on your clothes preferences and personal style. The company then ships you a box full of goodies to try on. You pay for what you want to keep (minus your $20 fee), and send back what you don't. Or, you get shipped a bunch of clothes that are laughably overpriced for their quality, and send the whole shebang back and eat the $20.

I'm legitimately the last person on Earth to try this service, so I thought I'd treat myself and just give it a shot. April has reviewed her Fixes with pretty good success, and seemed to have some good experience getting cute pieces to add to her wardrobe. I used her referral code, (use hers! She has better luck with this than me!) which gives her a $20 to her account for future goodies, and set off on my clothing adventure.

My first (spoiler alert: and last) Fix arrived last Thursday evening. I asked for some staple sundresses I could dress up  for work, but still dress down for weekend-wearing. I also requested a yellow cardigan, simply because that's a random staple I always forget I want.

I was sent the following...

-Color-blocked maxi dress. I actually really liked this. It was long enough (sometimes a struggle for me) and the fit was flattering. However, this bad boy clocked in at $88. I would have had to shell out $68 more to keep it. Give me a break.

-Purple shirt. I thought this was cute, but the material was pretty uncomfortable. My stylist said I could pair it with the skirt also enclosed in my package...

-This was actually pretty comfortable. The shirt is the only thing I could wear this with, because there is literally nothing else to pair with it in my closet.

-This is my exasperated look. This dress is the only thing I really thought about keeping. But once I kept it on for a while, I thought it fit weird around my stomach (food baby, I'm sure) and it was $64. $64. For viscose and spandex. In the

I was also send a simple white 3/4 sleeve cardigan, since they didn't have a yellow one in stock. $38 for Old Navy quality (NOT bashing bashing something I could get for $10.)

All in all, I get why Stitchfix is popular. (Kind of...) But the quality and pricing, in my experience, did NOT make sense. I just don't think these subscription services are for me!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015


A short update...

A few weekends ago I signed up for an arm balance/inversion workshop at the DCR Village. (Led by Gracie--if you are in the area and get a chance to take one of her classes, do it. She is sparkle and sunshine in human form. So warm and welcoming, and such a great teacher.) It ended up be mostly a focus on inversions, which introduced me to a new discomfort zone I didn't even know I had in me.

I was not one of those kids who could throw themselves around into cartwheels and back handsprings. I never made the dance or cheerleading team and I remember one ill-fated gymnastics class where I think my cousin Drew and I mostly screwed around and didn't listen to instructions. So, I've reached the ripe old age of 31 without ever really getting used to the sensation of flinging my head and feet up in the air and propping myself up by my hands or arms. And even with the knowledge that there's a wall right behind me, it makes me terrified to try.

We warmed up in an inverted L-shape handstand and...I could barely hold that bad boy. A little embarrassing, to say the least.

(Picture me doing this, but falling after 3 seconds. Also, I was wearing a shirt.)

The rest of the workshop made me realize inverting isn't just throwing myself into the air and praying something sticks. I've had to really start working on my upper-body training and core strengthening. Which I HATE. I have always hated core exercises, but now I'm regretting putting them on the back-burner for all these years. These poses use that strength so much, and I'm so dang weak.

One thing Gracie told us that has helped me was to visualize ourselves mastering our inversions in the middle of an empty room. No wall to balance off of, but perfectly holding a headstand or handstand. And to mentally feel what we'd feel once we accomplish getting there. Just holding that feeling in my mind has helped tremendously. 

So, I recruited a personal trainer to help me out a few times a week. We've been really focusing on pushing myself to the point of exhaustion using pushups, core exercises, and different upper-body moves he's learned in his years of being a professional strong-man

 (It's not Easter until someone takes a sneak-pic of you)

He's one of the most VIP trainers in the Valley. I repay him back in breakfasts out in exchange for him working me to not be able to lift up my arms. the few weeks I've been focusing on these areas, I've seen progress! This morning I mastered tripod headstand on my own in the middle of the floor during class! And yes, held it there for more than half a second. I just need to keep up with it. "Nothing changes if nothing changes."

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

It's Alive

Why yes, I am here. Here's a little rundown of things that have happened since my last entry (October 24...whoops):

-I turned 31. I celebrated with a spa day, and then AV made me a birthday mac and cheese that I still dream about. And my dad paid for our Pomo the weekend before!

-Then the next month, AV got me a sweet gift!
(Every time I come around yo' city, blang blang)

-We spent Christmas in KC and I met my NEW BEST FRIEND!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

...and saw some of my OG besties as well :) (but not nearly enough people--sorry, coming back for the holidays and trying to balance family/friend time is hard.)

-We hiked Camelback for the first time and I am obsessed! I hope everyone who comes to visit me in the future is ready to get up at the crack of dawn to experience it. Cannot wait to conquer it again!

-We spent another year at the Open. Unfortunately, ol' Tiger didn't stick around long enough for us to see him on Sunday morning.


(Gross weather)

-Running has been put on the back-burner indefinitely. While I am proud that I've finished 2 half mary's, it's just time to focus on what makes me happy and makes me feel my best, which is YOGA. I still run here and there, but I haven't gone more than 4 miles since October. I've also been going to a Tuesday morning "body strength" class, which is like a mix of BodyPump but with more cardio, and basically a gazillion squats interspersed throughout. Not the worst. And if anyone in the valley stumbles upon this blog and has a chance to take yoga classes led by Beri Golding: DO IT. Her Saturday morning flow class is a reason to live.

I'll try to get my crap together and update more than once every four months or so. I suppose that's doable.