My obligatory blogger new year reflection post

sabrinaresolutions2I couldn’t let the new year roll in without making my own 2012 reflection/ 2013 anticipation post. You would be sad. I don’t see the point in reflecting on old posts on this or my other blog because, well, you know how to search on websites – you’re smart like that. And I also don’t see the point in telling you my favorite posts of the year because that seems really conceited.

“Hey, I know I wrote a lot of important stuff this year but here’s the shit I wrote that’s extra brilliant.”

And a reflection of my most popular pieces around the web? Well if they’re so damn popular you can find them yourself. Because I’m a big deal.

(important: I am not a big deal.)

Now that we’ve cleared all that up, let’s start with 2012 shall we?

I made two resolutions last year and I’m happy to say they were both successful.

2012 Resolution 1: Get my fits back in order. Starting a fitness blog certainly helped to get me inspired there and I owe a lot of my early commitment to Bodyrock. Having that website to turn to for consistent new workouts was right up my alley. I may be a certified personal trainer but that doesn’t mean I want to come up with new workouts all the time. Bodyrock kicked my ass and took all of the work out of getting in shape for me. Okay not all the work because duh I still had to workout. But you know, the thinking stuff.

2012 Resolution 2: Be nicer. When I told people about this resolution they often retorted with “But you’re not mean” and I’m sayin – yea I know. I never said I was mean. The key to that resolution is the “er” part. It’s easy to get old and bitter and disgruntled – especially when you’re prone to sarcasm and cynicism like I am – but I don’t want that to happen. I made a conscious effort to be nicer. I offered to pay for things more (on the off chance I wasn’t broke), I held more doors open, I offered help to some friends when I just wanted to be selfish and not offer a thing. I didn’t really have a way to measure this so I asked David if it worked. He said yes, he noticed I was nicer. I’ll take his word for it. I’ll also continue challenging myself to be a nicer person.

And now *space noises here* a peak into the future…

2013 Resolution 1: Eat less animals. Once upon a time I was vegetarian, that transitioned into vegan, that transitioned into getting really sick and malnourished. I did the vegan thing poorly. I was more of a frenchfry-ivore than a vegan. I want to eat less animal products for a variety of reasons. 1.) I care about animals and the horrible state of the meat and dairy industries in this country are appalling; I don’t want to encourage this behavior. 2.) I care about the environment and want to make a less negative impact on my world. These industries make their mark known on our environment and not in a good way. 3.) When I’m eating less animal products I usually feel better. Lighter. Healthier. Happier. I’m not going full veg in either form again (at this point in my life) and I’m okay with that. I’m very much an all-or-nothing kind of person but I was watching Vegucated recently and it helped me see a different side. Any reduction of animal products helps in all of those arenas. So that’s my plan. Less animals. More vegetables.

2013 Resolution 2: Conquer my sugar addiction. I haven’t really developed a plan of action for this one yet but I’ve got all year AMIRITE?!

2013 Resolution 3: Get the hell out of Dodge. Or Northern Virginia. David and I are already working on putting this plan into action and I’m excited about our future once we get north. Even if that means I’ll have to get a real winter coat and not a fashionable one (sigh).

 

Suffice it to say I’m excited about 2013. I’m making moves! How did your 2012 resolutions go? Do you have any for 2013? Or are you an anti-resolutioner? I know that statistics say that something like 479% of people renege on their new year’s resolutions but they always seem to help me get myself on track. I guess I’m kind of lame like that, following through on new year’s resolutions like some sort of new year goody two shoes or something…

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Things I Love: Asics Gel Speedstar 5

asicswomensgelspeedstar5I can’t let go of these shoes. They are beat to all hell but still, I wear them. The trainers before these were Mizunos and I really liked them but these. These I love.

They’re fantastically lightweight and can we talk about the pink? Me + pink workout anything = pure glee.

These pink darlings have just enough cushion inside to make me feel like I’m supported without feeling like clunky clown shoes (important for a neutral gait runner like myself). They are incredibly breathable, even when I wear the horribly wrong socks.

I’m pretty sure I’m now an Asics convert for my everyday trainers. There is nothing about the Gel Speedstar 5 that I don’t like – from the fit to the fashion – it’s all great to me. When I finally get the money allotted in the budget for new shoes, I’m heading to Asics.

Heck, I might even get the same exact shoe.

This is probably the worst “stat” ever

We’re all unhealthy and fat! No saving us now!

A lot of math went into this particular statistic. Lots of numbers and research; you can tell from the use of the definitive word “most” and the incredibly vague “healthy behaviors” descriptor.

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My parents made me do it

note: I have had serious internal struggles trying to decide if I want my blog to run titles using sentence case or title case and I’ve finally settled on sentence. This is a new take on capitalization for me so bare with me as I come to terms with the lack-of-symmetry feeling sentence case gives me. Also, if you have no idea what I’m talking about I forgive you; also, you can ignore this note entirely and it will never have any effect on your reading experience here.

 

I’ve had people ask me before why I feel comfortable writing and how I’m able to write about myself without feeling weird or self-conscious. Informal, personal writing is where I feel most comfortable. I write like I speak and for the longest time I didn’t think there was any magic in this until people started asking me how they too could learn how to write the way they converse. I have legitimately zero ideas.

Well okay not zero ideas, more like two really unhelpful ideas.

1) Type fast. I grew up around computers (Tandy, hollaback!) so I developed my own way of typing before I even set foot in a middle school keyboarding class. I was allowed to have a broke ass computer in my room when I was younger because it made me feel special and all it did was black screen/ white type word processing  I’m pretty sure it did more than that at one point in it’s  little computer life but my parents were smart enough to only give me the already broken computer to play with.

When I did reach that keyboarding class in middle school my teacher made me sit in the back of the room near the window so none of my classmates could see me. After the first week she realized that I had horrible and incorrect typing form but I was typing faster than everyone else in the class and with great accuracy. So she made a deal with me: I could type as wonky as I wanted as long as I didn’t point out to any of my classmates that I didn’t have to type properly and they did. With my equally as wonky and still accurate typing best friend Mikey beside me, we had our special secret and we gladly kept it. We also both got straight A’s in that class. Huzzah.

It’s easier to write conversationally when your hands can follow along. Typing fast allows me to get my words down almost as quickly as I can think them so everything flows together that little bit easier.

2) Just do it. I like writing so I’ve written for fun as long as I can remember. Short stories, crappy teenage poetry, diary entries, plays, crappy blogs, not so crappy blogs – I have always been writing. I still write letters to friends occasionally too; it’s a lost art and if you wrote me a letter I would jump to reply back in kind.

I also happened to have parents that encouraged me to write. I’m not sure whether they did this because they saw that I liked writing, because they thought I was good and wanting to encourage me, or thought I was bad and wanted me to get better, or just enjoyed the entertainment of it all – but they were always giving my opportunities to write.

myfamilyoldSomewhere along the line in my childhood my parents decided that if I wanted something they didn’t fully support then I needed to explain myself. I needed to write an essay; a convincing argument. Essay topics were far and wide including explaining how getting my belly button pierced would not make me promiscuous or make others thing less of me, and even one on why I should be allowed to study under a rabbi**. I’m sure there are examples of essays I wrote that did not persuade my parents to agree with me (or at least appease me for my hard work) but I can’t remember any. I have a selective memory in which I am a consummate rock star.

It also helped that I was a huge nerd too because up through middle school (not high school, I was too cool) I would randomly ask my parents to give me writing assignments on the books I was reading. Or I had to make a shoe box diorama about the book I was reading. Or I had to make a poster about the book I was reading. You guys, when I tell you that I am – at the very core of my being – a super nerd, this is not an exaggeration.

I don’t know if my brother had to convince my parents to let him do things via written word but I should ask him; although he might have been too busy being grounded all the time to really have a leg to stand on in arguing for things he wanted. He also has more of a strong suit in math so maybe he was secretly doing math textbook assignments for privileges and I never knew.  Or maybe he just wasn’t as lame as me and didn’t care as much.

I digress. The point is that I wrote a lot and when I was writing it was about how I felt 99% of the time. I wrote about my experiences and opinions. I became really comfortable with expressing myself if given a pencil or a keyboard and I don’t know for certain  because it’s been so long but I believe that this can be credited in large part simply to the volume of introspective writing I was exposed to.

Just try to remember: writing about yourself requires certain levels of introspection and narcissism that not everyone is capable of or comfortable with and that’s okay too.

I write about my life because it’s what I know. What do you know? Go on, start writing. Right now. Write now (ha!). Okay not right this second because there’s still more to this blog entry but maybe, ya know, when you’re done reading…

Do kids still write notes to each other or do they only text now? Note folding is a lost art form. I was a pro at the triangle but I also  liked the break out the fold that had the pull tab to open the note on special occasions. I’m going to start passing notes around the office, all folded up with hearts and stars decorating them so I can relive the good ol’ days.

 

 

In my life recently…
Now that The Hobbit is coming out I’ve finally decided to read Lord of the Rings. Yes, I’m aware that’s backwards but whatever, I do what I want. For example: I talk to my books. Or if David is around I’ll be like YOU WOULDN’T BELIEVE WHAT IS HAPPENING IN MY BOOK RIGHT NOW THESE PEOPLE ARE RIDICULOUS. I’m certain he finds it all sorts of endearing.

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Oh and if you’re not following me on twitter, you’re missing gems like this one, celebrating my 1,000th tweet:

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@fitlaughlove for all of your important Sabrina updates.

**Yes, in middle school I started studying religion on my own and wanted to find out more about Judaism so I specifically asked if I could find a rabbi to study with, to teach me. I studied with him for quite a long time actually and learned a lot but this is another [long] story for another day.

Okay, you’re free to go write now.

Signs your gym was designed by a man

For the sake of my sanity, I recently joined the gym in the same complex as my job. It gives me the opportunity to recharge mid-day, saves me time in the evening (so I can get right to the eating), and most importantly it gets me the hell out of the office. It turns out that if you take your lunch at your desk in your office with the door closed at the same time every day, people assume that because you are , well, right there, they can just borrow a minute of your lunch time to talk about work.

No more talking about work on my lunch break. No more being at work on my lunch break. No more work on my break. That’s Me Time. And today I used that Me Time to watch Rikki Lake talk about bikini waxing, peppered with some occasional commentary from CNN on the presidential race. But let’s be real, I watched more Rikki Lake than CNN today. Because it’s my Me Time and I don’t have to think if I don’t want to.

There was a part of my lunch however, that was quite perplexing. The shower.

That’s a soap dispenser in the shower. There’s one in every shower.

What is it?

Is it face wash?

Body wash?

Hand soap?

Hand sanitizer?

Lotion?

Make up remover?

Shampoo?

Conditioner?

2-in-1 shampoo AND conditioner?

3-in-1 shampoo/conditioner/body wash?

What are the ingredients?

What does it smell like?

Does it have sulfates?

Parabens?

Is it tested on animals?

Why isn’t there One.Single.Label on this thing?

 

Listen here Gym, I may be excited about your fees but you had better believe that there’s no way in hell I’m going to use your unmarked goo during my shower in a gym that costs a mere $9.99 a month (and no contract!). I respect you, Gym, but dammit I just don’t trust you.

 

 

 

Through the lens

credit: my mom

Sometimes I need a reminder that those thoughts are only me projecting my harshest critiques onto myself.

I am not a professional photographer but it is amazing to me how easily everything quiets down when I  put that camera viewfinder to my eye. I don’t have time to focus on me. I have to focus on whatever subject happens to have found itself in that wee little box my eye is dashing around.

Focus.

Nothing exists but what is inside that frame.

I don’t care what I look like or where I am.

It’s just me. And focus.

My camera has been lounging in my fabulous bag for a bit too long recently and I was reminded of that when I had the chance to take pictures again this past weekend.

Oh and sometimes… people really are watching me. But they’re only watching out of curiousity, not because they’re waiting for me to do something particular. They’re just watching, and patiently waiting. Just in case I might do something worth capturing with that shutter…