Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Step to the Beat...

I love music; from classical to contemporary to alternative to rock. I love music. Music expresses the feelings my soul can't put into words, so it's only natural that I have music playing... ALL the time! A kick ass playlist is a necessity to my workouts, I feel incomplete without my iPod and a killer new On-The-Go list. When people look through the playlists on my iPod they are shocked to see that I have over 70 On-The-Go lists... what can I say, other than the fact that I LOVE music. So I thought I'd share with you this weeks favorite workout songs and maybe they'll inspire you to get up and bust a move-
  • Blow - Ke$ha
  • Super Bass - Nicki Minaj
  • Gettin' Over You (feat. Fergie & LMFAO) - David Guetta
  • The Edge of Glory - Lady GaGa
  • Like A G6 - Far East Movement
  • Born This Way - Lady GaGa
  • Get Buck In Here - DJ Felli Fel
  • Yeah 3X - Chris Brown
  • Youth of the Nation - P.O.D.
  • Double Vision - 3OH!3
That should get you started! Music is my life, so I'll periodically add more lists on here!! Happy exercising, dancing, partying, bedroom rock-outs, whatever your fancy!

Everyone is a Genius...

"Everyone is a genius. But if you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid."
-Albert Einstein
Have you ever been told you weren't good at something, or felt less because you believed you were inadequate? I have. This isn't a pity-party-post, not at all, this is about awareness. When I was in the 3rd grade, I was "diagnosed" with Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD). I didn't really understand what that meant but I was told that school would be harder for me and that I would have to try harder than everyone else. I was put in special tutoring sessions after swim team practice and I sort of treated it like it was some cruel form of punishment. I was told I was going to struggle with math, and that I would have a hard time paying attention in my classes... guess what happened years later? I struggled in math, and I didn't pay attention in my classes. Looking back, I now wonder if I struggled in math because of the diagnosis, or was I diagnosed because I struggled in math? I may never know. But because I was told I was going to struggle with academics and that I would be "bad" at somethings, I felt inadequate... I felt smaller, and I didn't try as hard as I could have.

Academic success is a BIG deal in my family, not that that is a bad thing, just added to my sense of inadequacy and insecurity. I struggled in some areas of school... scraping by with C's in math, economics, and some science courses. I thought I looked like a failure to everyone around me because I wasn't good at the things that I was supposed to be, and I was less of a person because of my lack of abilities. I hated school. Hated. Think of something that is an insecurity for you, then imagine being exposed to it daily and have it be something that literally defines you. That was school for me. Starting in middle school, I received letter grades that represented my academic performance for History, Literature, Math, etc. I had the report card release dates memorized, I found a duplicate mail key, and I stole the grades from the mailbox before my parents checked it. I had to steal my little sisters grades, as well, because if they got her grades, they would expect to see mine. My sister was such a lifesaver, she knew that school was hard for me and thought it was unfair that I be punished for my bad grades... even she, at a young age, saw how ridiculous the system I was forced into was. If I did well one term, I let them find the grades on their own, I never let my parents or anyone else know how much I hated school and how much I struggled with it.

There were classes I loved and I excelled in. I had a few teachers that believed in me and wouldn't let me give up, they saw something in me that I didn't discover, myself, until many years later. While a Choir class could be signed up for as a "easy-A" class by many people, I literally loved it and enjoyed it. It was a class that I enjoyed going to because I love music; I love singing, dancing, and playing piano. I love the arts. I also did pretty well in my literature classes, I really enjoy reading and writing, so the classes were an interest to me and they made sense to me. I was involved with Leadership, which was an extra curricular so I didn't receive credit for it, but I still loved it. I'm an outgoing individual, and a natural leader. I'm comfortable in front of an audience when delivering a speech, it doesn't terrify me like it does for most people. Do you see where I am going with this...?

I was told that I was going to be bad at school and that I would struggle... and I did. I failed many, many times. I developed amazing persuasive abilities and communicative skills that enabled me to talk my way out of failing and receiving some sort of extra credit or a second chance. It wasn't until I had a teacher, Mrs. Stephenson, tell me that I was an amazing public speaker and one of the best impromptu speakers she had ever see that I realized that I may actually be good at something. It wasn't until my choir teacher told me that I couldn't be in her jazz ensemble because I had a soloist voice that I realized I may actually have a talent. I still don't believe it most the time, I have 23 years of experience to fight against. For my entire life, I've been told that I, literally, had a learning disability. I don't know about you, but as soon as I hear "disability," I immediately think of words like "unable," "limited," inability," and "weakness." I have felt inadequate for my entire life. I just graduated college and I didn't really even care because in my eyes, it was nothing impressive, I got it done... that's all. It wasn't something worth celebrating, it wasn't anything impressive, just 5 torturous years that I couldn't wait to be done with.

I say "No More." I have spent my entire life feeling stupid, inadequate, and weak, because society had lead me to believe that because I wasn't as good at math or reading as quickly as I should have been that I was disabled. I loudly exclaim "bullshit!" I am the fish that was told I was stupid for not being able to climb a tree... well guess what? I'm a FISH! I can SWIM pretty damn well, why wasn't that good enough? I excel in the arts; singing, piano, anything musical, and I can draw pretty well. I'm a phenomenal public speaker, communicator, and writer. Tell me why those abilities weren't praised and admired? I am different, I am unique, and I am talented. Society may not know how to handle me and my gifts, but that's not my problem, that is clearly a problem that lies with society.

You may read this and relate, there may be an area in your life that you aren't so great in. Who the hell cares?! That's what I say! I got through college, yay for me, but now it's time to do things my way and I'm going to go out and make my dreams come true and make society respect me and my abilities. I recommend you do the same. If you ever feel less because someone tries to make you believe that your inability to climb a tree defines you, I give you permission to loudly exclaim "bullshit" and show them just how well you can swim!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Run Your Butt Off... Let the Games Begin

I am a fairly active individual. I love swimming, yoga, Zumba (the funnest workout I have ever done), dancing, hiking, and all around, playing! I'm a pretty energetic person - I LOVE to move. It's fun to get out and sweat, and my day just doesn't feel complete without a little ass kicking! There is an exception to my love of being active... I am a pretty lame runner, like I suck. I am "water" not "land." I've been a swimmer since I was little squish, they threw me in a pool when I was 2 and I never wanted to get out again. I'm pretty uncoordinated when it comes to land-sports like basketball. If you'd like to see a youtube video hit a 100,000 views in one day, try to get a video of me attempting to dribble a ball and run at the same time -- oh then trying to shoot the ball into a basket, it's solid entertainment.
My favorite family tradition is the Thanksgiving Day "Turkey Stuffer" 5k race that we wake up at the BCOD (butt-crack-of-dawn) for and run 3.1 miles. After the race finishes at the Willamalane Swim Center, the pool lets the racers and their families swim for free for a few hours! So we run, then swim... then we go home and play football and make a delish feast! Then we eat turkey and within a couple hours the Tryptophan takes it's effect and we pass the hell out! It's the best way to spend the day and I can't imagine my Thanksgiving any other way. The point of bringing up the Turkey Stuffer is that I don't run it, I walk it with a friend or two, and I'd like to be able to run it. I can run, but it's just not very pretty and I want to know how to be better!

I thoroughly enjoy working out and playing but I don't always have all the time in the world and for a workout, there is no quicker calorie burn than running. Seriously, it's been proven. With running you get the most bang for your buck, about 100 calories/mile, in fact. I want running to be a workout option for me, and I would love to add it into my daily activities. "Run Your Butt Off" is a book produced by the editors of "Runner's World," and it's a book on how to start running and lose weight. It breaks down running into 12 stages, and these stages can be completed at the rate that you see fit, you could complete them in 12 weeks, 3 months, 6 months, whatever. I love it so far! I skipped the first few stages just because my level of activity is higher than the book starts off with. It eases the reader into running, I'll show you an example of one of the stages... I can do a more complete description of the stages another time.
Stage 4
Walk for 3 minutes. Run for 3 minutes.
Repeat that sequence four more times.
End with 3 minutes of walking.
Total workout time: 33 minutes, 15 of which are running.
Do this workout at least 3 or 4 times in a week
before moving onto the next stage.
As you can see, it's not too bad! It's a short workout, the stages are never longer than about 35 minutes, and they increase the amount of running as the stages progress until you're running for 3o minutes straight! I'm currently working on Stage 4 this week, I did my first one yesterday, and it went great! I could totally handle the 3 minute sections of running, I probably could have skipped a few more stages but I wanted to ease myself into this and prove to myself, my body, and my mind, that I am capable of doing this! These aren't the only workouts I'll be doing; I try to hike Mt. Pisgah, or some other intense activity everyday, and that will help my running get better quicker! I'll also be shedding weight along the way, which is one of the main objectives. I'm not trying to be some skinny-mini, but I want to improve my running and my increase my activity level, and losing weight along the way is a fun perk!

This blog isn't just a health and fitness blog, but I will be writing about my journey through "Run Your Butt Off" and how it's going. I'm a very self-motivated individual and it's fun to write about my experiences, I hope you can enjoy the perspective and laugh with me along the way! If you feel like joining me, let me know! I'll post the stages and we can be running rock stars!

Let's give this a try...

I've never done a blog about me before... I've done a blog for a class project about my academic emphasis, but I've never posted anything about "me!" I guess I'll fill you in on the goings-on of my life and you can decide for yourself if I'm worth "following."
I recently graduated from Utah State University with a degree in Speech Communication. Usually, when I tell people that they assume I'm a speech pathologist, and I'm not. I am no more certified to cure your child's lateral lisp than I am to diagnose your odd idiosyncrasies. I've started to refer to my major as Speech and Communication Studies, people seem to understand that more. I'm basically an expert communicator and studied Interpersonal, Intercultural, Organizational, and Persuasive communication.
I'm moving to California in August to live out my dream... I'm going to be working for Disney as a Disney Desk Representative and I couldn't be more excited about it. I'm doing an internship program with Disneyland, but I'm hoping they'll want to keep me on after my internship ends. I had to wait till I graduated from college to apply for my dream job because I knew that if I had signed on to work for Disney... I would have never come back to finish school. I've done my time and it's time to do things my way!

I am currently mooching off my parent's in Oregon until my big move to Cali... jobs here haven't really panned out, so I'm picking up hours at the office every now and then and whoring myself out to families in need of babysitters. I'm hiking A LOT and just working my butt off (literally needs to happen, my bootay is hhuuuggeee). I'm also going to be making a few quilts and I'll be sure to update how those turn out. I'm reading books and getting through them pretty quickly, so I'm always in need of suggestions please. I'm currently reading "Run Your Butt Off." It's a sort of how-to guide for people, like myself, that SUCK at running. I'll explain more about this in another post laterz.
Well that's me for now... I'll be back soon!
Have a magical day