Transcript Wrangler

So I’m applying to grad school (remind me again why this is a smart idea?) and the most annoying part of my process is finding and sending all of my transcripts. I’ve attended four undergraduate institutions, and I swear it’s like pulling teeth to get these places (that I’ve already paid, mind you) to send my records to other places. Granted most have electronic systems now which helps, but of course I’ve got one straggler where the system doesn’t recognize me. Even though my name, birthdate, and social are still the same. Explain that, please?

So I guess once I figure out where I got lost in the Interwebs I’ll have that grad school thing on lock down.

I’ve been to a couple more spin classes, with plans for more, and I love it! I feel myself getting better in the classes already and my butt usually only hurts by the end of class. You guys, I might have a cardio addiction…

xoxo

Curtain Up

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[source]
In case you don’t watch PBS (or whatever your region calls it), they have a great series called Live from Lincoln Center. Since PBS is SO AWESOME, they also have everything available online. For free. For basically ever.

One of the more recent episodes was all about the School of American Ballet Student Workshop. When I saw the words “School of American Ballet” in my listings I almost peed from excitement then and there. Needless to say, I’m a Balanchine fan. But having never seen NYCB live (or even all the way through on video), I knew that this would be the closest I would get while sitting on my couch.

With my DVR set to record, I anxiously awaited the morning that the title would appear in my List. Settling down with my coffee, I devoured this program. To my surprise, the first number performed was Tchaikovsky’s Serenade, choreographed by Mr. B. Which, is my absolute favorite*. The moment I hear the opening chords, I get chills and have to stop what I’m doing to find out where it’s coming from. THIS. PIECE. IS. PERFECTION. The music, the costumes, the steps, OH ITS SO GOOD. And yes, I’m yelling it at you.

(*I assume that it would be my favorite if I ever saw it in real life. But either way I’m obsessed with it.)

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|Serenade!|

Next up is sections from Coppelia, Swan Lake, and one of the movements from Western Symphony. All equally excellent (and choreographed by Balanchine), especially the excerpt from Swan Lake, because the part with Odette and the Cygnets is what’s up. But I was so blown away by Serenade in its entirety, that I have since watched the whole program at least five times. At least.

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|Swan Lake!|

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|Western Symphony!|
[source for all three dance stills]

These kids, because they are actually kids, are phenomenal athletes and artists. Do they need a little bit more depth in their emotion? Sure. Could they use a few years in the corps to refine? Yeah, why not. But they look and act like professionals, which is amazing to me.

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|Rehearsal for Western, which literally looks like The Most fun.|
[source]

Just for you, I dug up the link to watch this online. You’ll find it here. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. Or hell, even half as much would probably be an appropriate amount. Even if you don’t love Balanchine, having a FREE 60 minute plus video of professional caliber performance is worth your time.

xoxo

Eh, Busted

This last week was a bust. I didn’t do shit. Sorry to disappoint. I’m in a pretty good cycle of feeling sorry myself and self-sabotaging my efforts. Just goes to show that you can put your goals out into the universe, but if you’re too lazy and blah to do anything about it, it won’t matter.

I’ve been getting these motivational emails about being active this month, but each email I felt more and more like a failure. Comparing myself to others, pissed at my current level of fitness. So to compensate, I sit on the couch and do nothing. I want to be better, but I’m really good at standing in my way.

So this is just a vent. If I’m not going to be honest it’s not worth it, right?

xoxo

Artsy Fartsy

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Nope, I didn't paint this. My actual artist friend did.

A few friends and I did one of those painting things tonight. You know, where you go to a little store and they give you a canvas with a plate for your paint and then all the type A – OCDers (aka us) immediately start to dry heave. There are no rules, they just give you a guideline and Bob Ross your asses as they “teach” you how to paint.

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Some actual blue grass.

I will admit that I really thought I was going to fuck this up. Especially when I saw the painting we were supposed to be working from. But it turned out alright. Plus they’re all, “hey you want to do a butterfly? Cool! But your friend doesn’t? Cool! They can do a moon! Or a caterpillar! Or whatever the fuck they want!” Except they did get a little testy when I tried to switch plates because we had a group coming but they didn’t seat us right. That was the only part of the night that had rules.

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Mine is on the left.

Our group leader friend picked a non-holiday themed piece, which I didn’t understand at the time, but now I realize that if you actually made a painting that looked nice you wouldn’t necessarily want a reindeer or a snowman adorning your walls all year round. So I appreciate that decision. At $35 it was a bit expensive, but it was nice to see all these ladies outside of work and be able to make something nice together.

I may have also discussed putting a TARDIS in the middle of mine instead of a butterfly, but just stuck with the program.

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However, the TARDIS would have looked great with the Dalek.

I think I would do this again. And I would invite more people. They do private parties that don’t cost any extra, so that might be nice for a birthday or something fun with a large group. Although all of us collectively, friends and strangers, basically complained about how bad we were at painting, so there’s a nice group atmosphere as well.

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Of course my eyes are closed.

Have you done something like this before? The only other thing I’ve done like it was a pottery painting class, which may be a little less stressful for your type A’s, since there’s more structure. Still fun, I promise!

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My painted blowfish with his broken tail.

xoxo

Temperature

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Why yes I did paint my nails just for you.

I’m never cold at work. I’m mostly swearing sweating at work. But of course the day I don’t bring a scrub jacket or wear a long sleeve shirt I’m freezing my ass off. I even drank hot coffee today. I drink iced coffee year round because I’m almost always perspiring. Geez. What is this, bizarro day?

xoxo

Seizing, But Not in a Seizure Kind of Way

So I’m talking with this friend, whom I always talk to about shit like this, and I realize that I’m cheating myself and taking this whole life experience for granted. Instead of embracing all the wonder and amazingness that I can grab, I flit around afraid of stupid shit and making excuses. Why? Why? I don’t know why, but I want to change it.

We’ve had our share of sad and tragic stories on the unit. Young people who are supposed to have their whole lives ahead of them are robbed of limbs, independence, or life itself. It’s terrible. But it can surely light a fire under your ass if you’re slacking or questioning, “what’s the point?”

What’s the point of running a mile every day?
To build up some fitness. To build up some endurance. To help me do the dancing that I love to do. To pump my blood and exercise my body. To help my body be able to carry itself easier and with purpose. To use the legs that I still have. To not take for granted the fact that I am here and I am alive. So that the next time you ask me, “how’s your 5280 going?” I don’t have to laugh and shake my head, admitting that I failed three days in.

So I’m going to do it. I’m going to seize the day, the opportunity, this experience, this life. And it’s going to be great. Who’s with me?

xoxo

Lazy, Lazy, Lazy

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Somehow this doesn't seem right...

There’s really no other way to describe my less than enthused attitude than laziness. On the days that I don’t work or don’t work a full twelve hours, I have adequate time to squeeze in some fitness. Do I do it? No. I don’t. I need some help. I have some kind of mental block. I will literally sit in the house for hours, deliberating on going out for a jog or doing some kind of at home workout. Hell, I could do some barre stretches or yoga, I love those things! But I don’t do them. All I need to do is get dressed and move but for some reason I never bring myself to do it. Yeah, sometimes it’s hard, but rarely do I regret working up a sweat. Not sure what my problem is.

In other news, ballet and tap are going well. Meghan has us trying for double pirouettes now. Haven’t been able to complete any but I think I did a couple 1.5ers. We are doing more complex barre combinations that have been good and bad. The ones I get I like, but the ones I struggle with I feel frustrated and want to do them over. There have also been a couple of across the floor combinations where I just stop, which is bad, because I can’t remember which way to turn or something silly, when it doesn’t matter and I should just turn. Actually, now that I think about it, I got pretty frustrated in tap and ballet this week. But I guess it’s a sign of improvement if I don’t chuck the whole class as a loss just because of some flubs, right?

So back to motivation. I was so inspired by the runners at the Iron Horse. I have been inspired by my coworkers, who exercise even on days where we work 12-13 hours. I am inspired by my dance classmates, by the dancer blogs that I follow, and the fitness bloggers that I follow. I want to do better in my classes, I want to feel more fit and healthy, I want to have better endurance and strength to provide for my patients. So why don’t I do anything about it? I’m not sure. I don’t know if I’m afraid that I will fail or afraid that I will succeed. Am I afraid that people will criticize? That they will laugh or talk behind my back? I don’t know. Those thoughts don’t enter my mind directly but I worry they are simmering in the background and influencing my choices. I know I shouldn’t give a single fuck about what other people think, but I can’t help but worry that these irrational and petty fears are what hold me back from myself.

How do you get or stay motivated? Have you ever had a serious mental block that held up your training or progress? Does fear show up in your periphery? Or are you just an all around badass and liver of life?

xoxo

Lessons For the Road

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I can't wait to get on the road again...NOT

All I want is a “hey thanks” wave when I let you in. Have we reached a point in society where we can’t even be bothered to throw our hand up in our car or stick it out the window if it’s that kind of weather? I DIDN’T HAVE TO LET YOU IN YOU KNOW.

Geez.

Acknowledge the non-shittiness of your fellow travelers. It’s our privilege, not our right. And use your turn signals while you’re at it.

(hops off soapbox…)

xoxo

Under Pressure

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Recovery!

Skipped a run today since my ankle was a teensy bit sore and I wanted to make sure I could make it though two days of ballet. Tap was fine. Ran on Saturday and it was sore for the wedding but feeling much better than previous activity laden days. Basically I spent all day today obsessing over it. And then searching for compression socks online. I’ve got several pairs that I wear to work but haven’t found my magic pair yet. Here’s hoping…

xoxo

Oh Shoot it Hurts

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Beautiful flowers from a country wedding this weekend

So a few ballet classes ago I was coming down from a grande jete and my left ankle kind of twinged. I don’t know if I landed on it won’t or what because I didn’t feel any kind of pop or twist. But it was fine the next day. Then when I came to class next week I did it again, on the first grande jete, same pain, no other injury or anything. But this second time it didn’t get better the next day, in fact it was sore all week and hasn’t stopped being sore. Sometimes it feels okay but I can’t quite pin point what’s wrong. Ibuprofen and ice helps. Braces and compression help sometimes. But I keep running on it so I’m sure that’s not helping. Womp womp. No ballet this past week so maybe it will be better for our double classes this coming week.

Tap started again! That definitely hurt when I got home. But it was good times. All kinds of dance this week.

I figured out how I can enjoy running! I put on headphones, jam to my music, and don’t give a shit about how fast I’m running. Did wonders for my psyche. Plus I just kind of danced around for an hour. Yipee!

xoxo

Are You Sirius?

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Turn to page....................394.

Sometimes you decide to reread Harry Potter when you’re 28 and it’s even better than you remember it.

Sit down and take time with these folks, you won’t regret it.

xoxo

Looking Up

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Rough life.

I’ll be the first to say it, I can’t believe I was so quick to judge my ballet studio. I was harsh. I thought that because my teacher was young and kind and the studio was unconventional that I wouldn’t receive quality ballet instruction. I was so wrong. Goes to show that not only can you not judge a book by it’s cover, but first impressions can be very deceiving. I’ve progressed further in the couple of months of one day a week beginning ballet than I did in a full semester of beginning ballet in college. And that class was four days a week.

We, the students, have mentioned that an additional class would be awesome. But I know that with my schedule I wouldn’t be able to commit to every week. Plus our instructor is in school and I think she teaches another class on top of the two she teaches on Thursdays (our class and the adult pointe class).

We are, however, doing a recital in the winter. I don’t know when it is, or even how many of our classmates will be in it. Our numbers seem to be dwindling as of late. At first I was against a recital, but now I think it will be nice to show what we have worked on and how much we have progressed. Plus tutus, amiright? Gives us something to work toward. Especially if a new group joins in the new year and we have to start all over again.

I’m considering returning to school next fall. Gross. Vomit. Ugh. But I think this program will be alright. A few friends are at this school currently and can vouch for it. It’s online except for clinicals, and you don’t have to take the GRE. It’s a masters, which is where I’m aiming right now. The school affiliated with my hospital offers a masters on the way to the DNP (which I’m not ready to commit to), and the school where I got my BSN doesn’t have a masters in an area I’m interested in. So yeah. We’ll see. Lots to contemplate.

xoxo

Metalobism?

About one month ago (July 1st) I started a diet called the Metabolism Miracle. Now, let’s get one thing straight: I hate the name of this program. It’s pretty dumb. BUT it’s working, so we’ll just call it The Program and go from there shall we?

So, The Program is aimed toward people with diabetes (which I don’t have) and other co-morbidities (that I don’t have) but the whole point is that not everyone has the same metabolism and so not every weight loss plan works the same for everyone. This I can attest to. Cutting calories didn’t help. Weight Watchers helped and then it didn’t. My Fitness Pal, same thing. My problem was that even though I would keep my points/calories/whatever in check, I was eating all the wrong foods for my body. Thus I would lose maybe a pound or two and then nothing. I would get frustrated, then backslide. Over and over again.

So I hit the books. I read tons of food books. All veggies, no wheat, all raw, etc. etc. All the books had good ideas, but I knew that I wouldn’t be able to commit. Each plan had some kind of snag that I knew I would not be able to get over to be successful. And the last thing I wanted was more backsliding. Now that’s not to say that The Program is the be all end all of food management. I’m just saying that this is what has worked for me so far, so I wanted to share just what I’m doing and some highlights of The Program.

It has three phases. The first phase is 8 weeks long and very low carb. As in < 5g every 4 – 5 hours. And let me tell you, there is almost nothing that is < 5g of carbs. At least nothing that I used to eat. So I knew that this would be a complete revamp and overhaul. I had to take to the pantry and gasp throw unopened food away. Because I knew that, no matter how off limits, if they were in there, I would eat them. So, I scoured and researched and made a list of foods that were “allowed” and I bought them, and I ate them, and I’m doing pretty awesome if I do say so myself.

At my one month mark, I was down over 10 lbs, and 29.5 inches. Yes. 29.5 inches. INCHES. That’s almost 2.5 feet. And you know what’s sad? Is that it’s pretty difficult to tell. I can tell that some of my tighter pants feel more comfortable, my ballet gear is a little less embarrassing, but I still have a way to go.  I’m more than halfway through phase one, so in a few weeks I’ll be able to add more carbs back into my diet, and won’t have quite as many restrictions.

The beauty of phase one, for the people affected with metabolic disorders, is that without carbohydrates, your pancreas doesn’t release insulin. And according to the book, this resting of the pancreas allows your body to break down fat for fuel to feed your brain (and since fat is “bigger” than muscle that’s why it looks like I’ve lose more weight than what shows on the scale). It also resets your metabolism and stops your body from being bombarded by an overproduction of insulin, which it can become resistant to. Thus, when you add the carbs back in, which is slowly and methodically, you won’t have the extreme highs and lows that come from uncontrolled blood glucose. Plus you’ll have a great jump start from your 8 weeks of success and newly refined eating habits to fall back on. At least that’s what I’m hoping.

I’m the kind of person who needs structure. I need lists of things I can and cannot do. If I can put some foods on a list that are “not allowed” and some foods on a list that “are allowed” then I do much better than if I have a list of foods that are “recommended” or allowed “in moderation”. I have no concept of moderation. I eat my feelings. I do not stop eating when I’m full. I know, it’s a problem. So for me, eliminating “bad foods” for a period of time is perfect.

For the first few days it was really hard. And I’m not going to lie, there are times when I really miss stuff. Like candy. I miss candy. And fruit. But I can’t complain. Because I feel great and I’m doing so so well. And I can have all the things that are really important. Like coffee. And steak. And cheese.

So I’ll be updating on my progress. And here’s the link on Amazon for The Program. I bought it on my Kindle and then wanted a hard copy for the recipes and such. So I actually have two of them. Plus the cookbook. Which I basically bought for desserts. Which are a lot of trial and error. So if you’re struggling, check it out. Or don’t check it out. Do whatever your little heart desires.

xoxo

City Lovin’

I wanted to post some pictures from this project I’ve been working on. My friend Ashley, over at The Wine Stain came up with #30DaysofCityLove as a way to explore her city and her relationship with it. It has morphed into a very cool exploration of city dwellers points of view from around the world. Pretty sweet, eh? I will admit, I’m a city basher, but like she talks about in her post, I am one of those people that doesn’t do anything in the city, so I probably shouldn’t bad mouth it. I thought that this exercise would get me out into my city to maybe discover some things that I like and maybe find some new stuff to do. So far it hasn’t. So far I’ve taken pictures of stuff around me, but haven’t made it a priority to get out there and find new things. Mostly because I’ve been working a lot, and like I’ve said before, I bust my ass when I’m at work, so I don’t want to do anything when I’m off. But tonight I’m going out to dinner with some friends downtown, so I’ll take a lap around while I’m out. Here are some of my pictures (follow me on Instagram!) so far.

 

This is my hospital!

This is my hospital!

This is a fountain!

This is a fountain!

This is a backroad!

This is a backroad!

This is Abe Lincoln!

This is Abe Lincoln!

And here's some art!

And here’s some art!

Some other updates:

  • We got a new kitty! I’ll talk more about her in her own post but here’s a sneak peak of her precious little face.

This is Peppermint Patty!

This is Peppermint Patty!

  • I was doing an at home ballet class today and did a double pirouette! I don’t think I’ve ever done a double in my life. I’ve noticed some great changes in my abilities from taking class once a week, I wish I could take it more often.
  • I’ve started a new way of eating two weeks ago and it’s been amazing. I am waiting just another couple of weeks to go into detail about it but lets just say that I’ve seen very, very positive changes and I’m loving it.

Talk to you soon!

xoxo