Inspired by Insta Models

In an effort to get myself feeling like myself again, I’ve been attending a new fitness class. Unsurprisingly, it’s yoga-based (I know, I know, I never talk about yoga – you’re likely shocked…). It’s called Yoga Sculpt and it incorporates both yoga movement and weight-based workouts, plus intense cardio, plyometrics, and all sorts of other torture.

But I don’t just go to this class any time of day. I go to the very first class in the morning at 6 am at one of the busiest studios in the city. I go with the intense early birds and go-getters. It’s crowded and sweaty but effective…so I like it.

And, I learned after the first class I went to, that’s the time of day where the Insta Models workout.

Now you don’t have to be in insanely great shape (or insanely talented, let’s be honest) to be Insta Famous. And I have my own clear perspective on how I generally feel about being too obsessed with Instagram.

But there are a ton of people on Instagram who consistently show off their healthy lifestyles. And some of them don’t even need photoshop to do so. These are some of the people I’ve begun working out with in the morning.

Keep in mind, too, I live in Los Angeles where actors, models, and personal trainers (and often various variations of the above three labels) abound. I’m used to seeing pretty people and I’m used to seeing very in shape pretty people. So when I say I see these Insta Models…I mean they are genuinely beautiful people. Even with their sleepy makeup-less faces early in the morning.

When I went in the first day of class, I was intimidated. I already knew the class was difficult from previously trying it out (at a more reasonable hour). Generally the people in the class studio are in pretty good shape. But these 6 am class people… they’re no joke. The yoga outfits are on point, their weights are ready, and they are already warming up. Once we get started, they go hard. And you can see the results in their incredibly toned bodies.

There was a part of me (who I used to listen to a whole lot more when I was younger and insecure) who wanted to curl up and hide from these women. I felt like I wasn’t worthy. I am not in my best shape. And, honestly, even when I am these women are still on another level.

Instead, however, I decided to let them inspire me. I’d take my cues from the hard work they’re putting in all around me and let their motivation fuel my own. When I wanted to quit at something, I’d look around at the badasses who are putting in the work around me and try to keep up. And I’d let their fit bodies be a reminder of what you can achieve if you really commit. Because they’re not just filtering themselves and pretending to be in shape. They’re there putting in the work.

There’s one woman in particular who, I’m gonna be honest, is a freaking glamorous beast. Her outfits are beautiful. Her body looks photoshopped. She doesn’t even put her perfectly curly hair in a ponytail as she annihilates every exercise by going above and beyond even the rest of the class. While most of the class (myself included) are struggling to keep our 5 lbs weights going during some of the more intense reps, she’s using 10 or 15 lbs and going hard.

The other day as we were warming up, I saw her start to really dance to the loud music like she was getting in the zone. Years before, I might have listened to the forced inside and outside of me that said “Be jealous of her” or “Who does she think she is?” Now I see her getting her groove on with her heavy weights at the ready and doubling up on most of the exercises by pushing herself harder than anyone else and I think “Fak yeah, girl. If you can do that, I can do this.”

She and the other people in that early morning attack class are total badasses. And I’m inspired to be the same simply by being with them. Though, to be fair, you won’t see me post about it on Instagram because that’s just not my thang.

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Crop Top

crop topI never thought I could pull off a crop top. I mean, look at this guy. I don’t look like him!

Growing up, I was always most self-conscious about my stomach. It’s where I hold most of my weight. It’s the last thing to start toning out when I am getting in shape. I’m not shaped like a tiny slender stomached chick. I’m more athletic (when at my best) so only making major cuts and really going out of my way to work it make a difference.

I’ve gone on about this before.

But as I’ve gotten slowly more confident with my body and pushed the limits of my own shape… I’ve ventured out in my dress too. I’ve actually worn crop tops on occasion.

I feel so naughty for even admitting it! AH!

I’m from Indiana. We don’t wear crop tops there. I certainly never wore them or even considered such a dramatic clothing choice. But I’ve slowly let the land of the people who are more bold and confident with their body and clothing seep into my own thinking. I’m not saying my shirts are that short… but sometimes a little tummy can peek out. And I don’t get self-conscious. And I’m proud of that. Not because I look like a photoshopped fitness model. But because I look good. And I work on it.

But more importantly, I work constantly on being ok with me. So if that means wearing modest crop tops without embarrassment because they make me sort of feel like a rockstar, so be it. Bring on the scissors. I’ve got a tiny sliver of stomach to let peep out.

I Hurt Everywhere

Bad-Personal-TrainerI’ve mentioned before that I get a personal trainer every once in a while. It happened again recently. I was grateful because I needed a little physical boost. I hadn’t been great about getting to the gym so I figured a personal trainer would be a great excuse to really go hard and get a good workout in.

The result… I hurt everywhere for three days. This guy really did me in. He’s a good trainer. He’s excellent at intuitively knowing how to push you just past your limit. We did metabolic training. I don’t do metabolic training on my own. I was breathing hard and screaming profanities a lot. I knew it would hurt.

And it did. For a few days. I walked slow and went pee carefully. Everything was sore. Nothing was easy.

And I’m grateful for it.

It was the best workout I’ve had in a very long time.

Energy!

arnoldI’ve talked before about being in shape for my career. Many times.

But when I was filming a short western pilot I wrote a couple weekends ago, I learned first hand exactly why it’s necessary.

You need energy to film action sequences during long, hot days in the desert without air conditioning while wearing heavy and thick outfits. You gotta keep up your energy and enthusiasm. And if you want to do that, you need to go into filming in great shape.

Having only focused on simpler comedy before the western, I didn’t really know the exactly value of being in good shape. But after the three days of filming, I now know. I was lucky to be in decent shape. But if that pilot gets picked up like we hope it will and turned into a series, I’m gonna have to get in great shape before filming. Because we’re gonna be doing even more stunts in even hotter weather wearing even more ridiculous outfits. And I don’t want to be fighting exhaustion the whole time. I wanna be giggling and enjoying every moment of it.

Fit for Film

averageI’m shooting a short Western this weekend. I’m very very very very very very very very very very very very very very very (deep breath) very very very very very very very very veeeeeery excited about.

There are gonna be stunts and horses and gunfights and shenanigans. I’m stoked.

I’ve been pushing myself to get in great shape for it so I have the endurance to keep my energy all the way up all weekend long and have the body strength to make my character even more badass and awesome.

Because I don’t want anything about this project to be average. Myself included.

So push it.

I apologize for the use of this cheesy Fitspiration here. It’s too perfect for my current mindset not to use it.

Coach Potato

fitness21No. I didn’t misspell couch. I meant coach.

I’ve been considering getting a fitness coach for a little while. Not a personal trainer (momma can’t afford that right now…) but a fitness coach. There’s this lady online named Rachel Nicole. She’s picture here. She’s in badass shape. And her prices are reasonable.

I even emailed her. I wanna buy the 3 month package. She gives you the whole nutrition and the fitness plan and check in with you weekly about your goals. And you get access to her via text if you need it or have specific questions.

I think that sounds perfect for me.

I’ve just been holding off. I was going to buy it several months ago, but instead I spent money on (more) improv classes. I have no regrets about that choice (even though they’re not yet paid off…), but I’d like to refocus sometime soon on getting in badass shape like this chick. If I had spent my money on this, I would have spent like 1/3 of what I spent on my improv classes. If that gives you any perspective about how expensive friggin classes are out here in LA.

I haven’t committed to it yet. I’m letting myself recover financially from some other choices and trying to get some money coming in from some of the (many) investments I’ve made over the past year.

But hopefully soon I can get up off my butt and support this lady who will in turn support me on my own fitness journey.

Until then, I’m considering myself a lazy coach potato.

I used (a lot) of parenthesis in this (blog) post. I (don’t) know why. I (do) know it’s confusing. I’m (very) sorry (?).

My REAL Fitness Pal

bestiesI’m trying it again. If you recall, I think My Fitness Pal is a jerk. But, as I mentioned earlier in this week, I’m on a Data Diet. And because I can’t fork up the big bucks for a personal trainer or a personalized diet and fitness coach yet, I’m gonna give this asshole app another try. But this time, I’ve enlisted help from a friend.

My friend let me stay with him for Comic Con and we were lucky enough to get to hang out almost all weekend. And he got to meet Data, too. And he was as inspired to get into shape as I am. So we talked about it and decided we’d get each other’s backs and do this dumb Fitness Pal thing again.

So I made him my friend on there (the only one I have because I don’t like sharing all my information with everyone- contrary to the impression this website may give…). I can see how he’s doing and he can see how I’m doing. And because I don’t see him every day and only chat with him periodically, it could be perfect. I’m gonna assume he’s working hard at his diet and exercise and he’ll assume the same for me. And we can check in with each other’s progress on the app. And provide moral support when needed. And not let each other get away with excuses.

At least that’s the hope. We’ll see how it goes…

 

Data Diet

dataI’m going to brag for a moment. Please forgive me.

This past weekend I went to San Diego Comic Convention. And it was wonderful. And overwhelming. And I ate terrible foods and drank too much beer and had a fabulous time with friends old and new.

But one of the highlights of my trip was meeting a childhood hero of mine, Brent Spiner aka Data from Star Trek Next Generation. He was at a robotics party I went to. There was a cover charge for the party. I didn’t want to pay it. But I saw he would be there, so of course I forked it up.

And it was worth every penny.

He was kind and charming and took the time to really talk to every person who waited to see him. He didn’t just make it a photo opportunity, he made it a chance to get to know you and find out who you were. It was friggin’ delightful.

He gave me some advice. A few things, really. Most of them I’ll keep to myself because I think that’s ok to do sometimes. But he did offer me one bit of advice when it comes to being a comedic actress. He said get yourself in the best shape possible to give yourself every advantage in this career as possible. His point was essentially, if you already have a lot of things going for you (which he said I did… omg giggle giggle giggle!), it will do nothing but help you if you can be as in shape as possible. It’ll open up even more opportunities. (My friend joked with me later that “Data called you fat,” which I can understand how it may sound when I relay the story but I know that’s not at all what he meant. Or if it was, I was too many beers in to have taken it that way.)

The thing is- I completely agree with him. I talk about it sometimes in my posts. I’m in an industry that cares what you look like, so why not give yourself every advantage? Because I produce my own work, I can avoid some of the rigorous judgement. But the truth of the matter is, I want to create a career where I’m constantly producing work that people see. Which means people will see me in that work. So people will be looking at me. And I want to give them the best product possible. And the bottom line is that product should mean getting in and maintaining the best shape I possibly can.

So I told Data… I mean Brent… that I would get in great shape (right after Comic Con… because I was drinking a heavy stout beer during our chat). And I tell him about it after I did so. And he said he couldn’t wait to hear about my progress. And I giggled uncontrollably. And then we took a picture.

And I walked away promising myself I’m going on a diet starting Monday (today). And I’m calling it the Data Diet. And it might just be the most motivated I’ve ever been to get in shape in my entire life.

Thank you, Brent. Thank you, Data. Thank you, San Diego Comic Con.

I’ll keep you updated.

Sperm Bank

shocked faceI saw an add for a sperm bank on one of the TVs that plays around my gym. Not like the regular TV that plays regular programming. I’m talking about the TV monitors that just continuously loop in-house ads. Maybe your gym doesn’t have them. You probably pay more per month for that luxury. Good for you.

Normally, I ignore the ads. But one caught my eye the other day. Can you guess from the title of this post which one it was?

That’s right. It was for a sperm bank.

It wasn’t that I was shocked at the content of a Sperm Bank. It’s that the tag line was, “Get one last workout in before you go home” or something like that. Along the lines of “One more rep for a good pump.” Something grossly inappropriate. To the point where it made me laugh out loud. Which I don’t like to do at the gym because I like to stay invisible. But I laughed. And people looked at me funny. And I looked down and scurried off.

I can handle an ad for a sperm bank at the gym. But I cannot handle a witty tagline that tries to relate sperm bank donations to working out. I will giggle every time.

Wouldn’t you?

Gym Break

couch_potato_misty_2_by_lardmeister-d4cd9odI had to take a break from the gym. I don’t like it, but it’s the reality.

My schedule for the past week has been so packed, I’ve barely had time to sleep let alone shower or go to the gym.

I’ve mentioned before that I don’t like when I’m out of balance and can’t get to the gym. This is the longest I’ve gone without any workouts in a long time. And the worst part- I’m also out of control of my diet since I’m running all over the place and don’t have time to get to the grocery store let alone prep food for the week. So it all feels out of control and I get anxious that I’m losing all the progress I’ve made in working out.

Then again, everything has a time and a place. I know (because I’ve been practicing telling myself this stuff for years) that balance is important and it’s ok to sometimes to be a little off balance. It’s a journey not a destination.

But it still feels funky and makes me feel a little off and I wish I could just squeeze in a workout somewhere without sacrificing one of the major projects on the plate right now.

Or… maybe… I just need to not put so many daggum projects on my plate so this doesn’t happen again because it feels funky.

And makes me type nonsensical.

Much like this blog.