My Year Of Jesus

I celebrated a birthday yesterday. Not just any birthday. My birthday. So I’m writing this for really two reasons:

  1. It seems as good of a time as any to hop back on ye olde familiar blogging wagon. Hello again, dear friend.
  2. I’d like you to please wish me happy birthday. Love me? VALIDATE ME?

Without giving away my age, it was a pretty exciting birthday because it makes me as old as Jesus was when he emerged on the miracle scene. If you really need to know my age, pull out a handy dandy Bible and you’ll quickly find your answer. Life Hack: You can also Google.

The last year of my life was a profound one. I married a kick ass dude. We added to our ever-growing dog family. I filmed a stand up special. I booked a lead in a pilot. I finally broke down and committed to a career I’ve wanted to do forever. In between, I yoga-ed my face off.

The truth is, I was looking forward to my last year for a long time. I was told years ago by a psychic I trust that that particular year would be a big one for me. I had high hopes for it. It lived up to them. Mostly.

But what I hadn’t thought about years ago when I got whispers that that particular year in my life would be a big one was what would happen after it. I supposed in my head I thought, well after that year, my life will be perfect and everything I ever hoped for will fall into place and I’ll finally be satisfied.

Yesterday was my birthday. (You: Happy birthday! Me: OMG Thank you for FINALLY saying something!) Well, I’m now in no-man’s land of prophecies. No psychic told me what would happen in this year. And, though my last year was a major success on many fronts, I’m not yet where I figured I would be by now.

When I first realized this a few weeks ago, I got mopey. Maybe it was the July heat. Maybe it was the stars. Maybe it was what Steven Pressfield calls “The Dragon of Resistance” attacking slyly. Whatever it was, I was mopey and felt really sorry for myself. And, as a result, did very little to really sprint to the finish line of that year. Mostly, I ate ice cream, let my yoga practice fall by the wayside, and scrolled around social media wondering why certain people were getting breaks I wasn’t. All in all, an underwhelming finish to a spectacular marathon of a year.

Despite the fact that this past year was major and wonderful on so many fronts, I still got mopey and kicked myself for not being the most famous comedy superstar on the planet yet.

Then I got thinking about Jesus. And I thought, next year I’ll be as old as Jesus when he was being all Jesus’y. And I realized, “My god, I mean, Jesus Christ, Briana, Jesus was just a carpenter until he was your age. This is your chance to make miracles like him.”

Now let me pause…and denote that I’m pausing by inserting a paragraph…with multiple ellipses…

I’m not a religious person. I’m a big fan of Jesus. I’m also a fan of Krishna, Buddha, and Mother Nature, among other admirable icons. My point being, my choice to be inspired by Jesus doesn’t come from an intensely religious place. It comes from a genuine admiration for people who have positively changed the course of history by living their truth so fully they become almost larger than life.

To me, that’s what Jesus can represent if you want.

For me, Jesus’ age reminds me that in order to truly make miracles, you’ve got to take time to train yourself to get there. As much as my ego (and fear) may want me to believe that I’ve been at this for so long and I’ve been working so hard and yada yada yada, even the son of God needed a few decades to get his sh*t together.

So I’m dubbing this year my Jesus year. I’m going to share about it here, if you want to tune in. I want to make miracles. Ideally, most of them involving turning a lot of water into wine because, you know, it’s wine.

Also, yesterday was my birthday. Please tell me happy birthday and that I’m special.

Thanks.

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Bush Cheer Squad

Fair warning: This is not a political post in any way.imgres

I’m literally talking about a bush that I pretend to be hoards of fans cheering me on while I run. And by run, I mean when I physically attempt to move my body at a faster rate than usual by putting one foot in front of the other.

I don’t like running all that much anymore. Getting back into shape sucks. And it’s all I can do to push myself to keep going on a very short and easy run that would take my former runner self absolutely no time and hardly work up a sweat doing.

Plus, I don’t listen to music, so I let my imagination run free.

And one of the things my imagination does is pretend that this unruly plant who’s branches stick out onto the sidewalk at one of the points in my run is actually a hoard of people cheering me on and holding out their hands to give hi-fives.

That’s all I really wanted to say.

It makes me feel both ridiculous and motivated. As all the best mind-tricks do.

So, yeah, no politics talk.

 

Inside Out Shirt

success kid shirtYou’ll notice that I do my best on this blog to never gym shame anyone. Unless it has to do with basic gym etiquette (or sometimes basic human etiquette).

But you won’t hear me making fun of people. Part of that is I just in general have a policy of kindness. But part of it is because I recognize that I often don’t have all my sh*t together, so far be it from me to point out somebody else’s shortcomings.

Case in point: I saw a woman the other day with her shirt inside out. I thought, “Come on lady. Check your shirt.” Then I caught myself judging, realized it was just because I was exhausted while working out and trying to find something else to think about, and made myself find three things about her to compliment in my mind. I felt guilty for passing judgement (I’m Midwestern. Feeling guilty comes naturally.), so I made myself do kindness penance.

And, wouldn’t you know it, a couple weeks later, I’m at the gym and realize midway through my workout that I had my shirt on inside out.

I could have gone and changed, but I figured “Meh. Such is life” and let it go.

Because we’re all human and we have days we’re more “off” than others. And I figured anyone who noticed wouldn’t care. And anyone who would notice and care about such things wasn’t worth my time anyway, so I shouldn’t care.

Because…

be-who-you-are-and-say-what-you-feel-because-those-who-mind-dont-matter-and-those-who-matter-dont-mind-11

Vegas Britney Motivation

I’m headed out of town with some girlfriends. We’re going to Vegas. And we’re gonna see Britneybritney vegas Spears perform there. And I’m stoked. Like, totally stoked maaaaaan.

For the past couple weeks I’ve let her be my motivation. Girl looks good. And she’s had two babies and some messed up stuff happen to her. But she stays in great shape. And has an athletic body. So it’s a shape that’s attainable for me (at my best…).

I may not look like her. But at least I look like a better version of me while trying to look more like her. But also staying true to me. Because me as her wouldn’t look good but me as me but in her-like shape would.

I don’t know what I’m saying. I’m drunk already.

Vegas, Britney, Vegas!

 

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…

 

Crash Bam Boom

Last weekend I had a rare Saturday free. I was planning on doing a bunch of things, but didn’t really have anything specific on the docket. So instead of being my normal, hyperproductive self… I crashed.

I even took a picture as proof. crash

That’s me face down on top of a clothes pile on my bed holding a beer.

I would like to point at that at least the floor around me was relatively tidy. Pretty proud of that.

Basically my day went like this: Sleep in until 11:30ish. Meditate. Putz around the apartment. Eat. Workout. Do dishes. Put clothes away. Go for a walk. Meditate again. Eat again. Another walk for a snack. Some staring at the computer screen. Some texts convincing people I was too busy to go out. Some more putzing. Do required writing for class tomorrow. Bed.

That’s it.

And- even though I didn’t yet have my Matthew McConaughey-style-motivation, I’m still pretty proud of that day. It was needed. It was the first time in weeks I exhaled. It was the first day I did whatever I wanted and barely talked to anyone around me. It was a me-day. And it felt good.

I had a lot of stresses- personal, financial, and career-oriented- over the past couple months. I just kept plowing through them without taking time to relax. And last Saturday, I finally just let myself relax.

And even though I wasn’t productive, I set myself up for a much more well-rested, energetic, and productive rest of the week. I think I need these crashes every once in a while.

 

Alright, Alright, Alright already!

MMcConaughey120309_08-fullI grabbed coffee with a comedy friend of mine this weekend. We were discussing our projects and all the ways to be a good performer in this career and whatnot. We also discussed just balance in general- talking about how to fit in fitness with everything else we are juggling. I mentioned how hard it is to find time for a workout. And he relayed the following story:

His friend worked with Matthew McConaughey on set for one of his projects not long ago. He said that they worked on lines together and spent tons of time together over a period of several months. And he said, in that time, McConaughey always found time- no matter how busy or strenuous their schedule- to get his workout on. They were getting up at 5 am and working well past midnight. But he would always find time to workout. Even if it was at 2 am when he had to be back up at 5 am, he found 30 minutes to get on the bike and get in a good sweat.

And then he said something really telling. He said, “The people with the things we want and admire are willing to do what most of us aren’t.” Or something like that. I’m paraphrasing. I didn’t record our conversation. That would have been weird. And I’m enough of a weirdo as it is.

But that idea struck me. I’ve thought about it before and even written about it. But it was never so clearly illustrated as it is with a man who’s career and work ethic I admire.

Yes, I work pretty hard. But there’s room for improvement. There’s always room for improvement. I’ve been slacking on my workouts lately. I don’t like it. It doesn’t make me feel balanced. It makes me feel bloated and insecure. So how do I get the body I want and admire? I have to be willing to do what most people aren’t. I have to be willing to make sacrifices. More sacrifices than I’m already doing.

I don’t yet have the luxury paying my bills easily through creative projects. It’s coming- I’m sure- but it’s not here yet. So I have to give myself every advantage. And I have to work harder than those around me. In every way. And that means getting up earlier, working out more, and not making any excuses for why I don’t yet have what I want. I’m not patient enough to wait for it to come to me. I’ve gotta get clear about what I want and go out there, work my ass off, and get it.

No excuses. Only results. Let DO this.

My Girl, Jill

jillYears ago, I was a big, big Jillian Michaels fan. I read her book “Master Your Metabolism” and was totally hooked. I bought her 30 Day Shred DVD, subscribed to the podcast, and watched more YouTube interviews with her than I’d care to share here. I loved her.

But my fascination started to fade. I realized that she was a wonderful gateway drug into the fitness world for me and gives you that needed boost when you’re looking for quick, easy workouts and ways to regain a healthy lifestyle if you fall off the bandwagon. But like most of my intensely obsessive phases, I outgrew her a bit.

I still admire her work ethic and her workouts, but I’m just not obsessed anymore. I used it as a springing off point for my own research into what works for my body and my own fitness goals.

But then this past weekend, we had a little Renaissance. I was running late in the morning before getting to work and I really wanted to get a good workout in. I calculated how much time it would take to get to the gym, park, and still get in an effective workout before I came home, showered, got ready, and started fighting traffic on my way to work. I realized I really didn’t have time.

Then I remembered my girl, Jill.

I have a her Ripped in 30 program. I didn’t do it much because my apartment used to not have enough space. I also love going to the gym, so I usually would rather just do that. But on this Saturday morning, I realized all the factors were aligning and I could revisit my old fitness buddy for a quick and effective workout.

So that’s what I did. I did the week 1 Ripped in 30 workout. And it was great. It was everything she promises her workouts to be. Quick, challenging, doable, and effective. I even had a little extra time to add some extra arms and abs work on my mat afterwards. And I felt great. She had all the elements that I loved and hated about the DVD that brought me back to my obsessive days.

I even did it again the next morning (for time constraints again).

There’s really no excuse to not getting in a good workout. If you can’t make it to the gym or don’t like going… I don’t want to hear it. My girl Jill has put in a lot of time an effort to create great workouts you can do quickly at home and fit into any busy schedule.

So thanks, Jill. Can I call you Jill? No? We’re not friends? We’ve never met? Nobody calls you Jill?

Aw, Jillypooh. You’re such a joker.

It’s over

sad heartIt’s been almost a month since I last wrote about my gym boyfriend. When I wrote about it then, we hadn’t seen each other in quite some time.

As of today, I still haven’t seen him.

So I’m calling it. It’s over. I can’t even start obsessing over my rebound fling guy because I haven’t seen him, either. And there are no other guys at the gym who tickle my fancy. So I guess it’s over. I’m gym single. I’ll have to just go back to focusing on my workout and not giggling and pretending to stretch in the corner. Ugh.

Maybe they got cold feet. Maybe they really felt the connection between us and got by the intensity of our (my) eye contact. Maybe they just stopped working out. Or maybe they somehow found this blog and moved far far away from LA.

Whatever the reasoning, I’ve decided to let it go. Move on. You’ve gotta get rid of the old stuff in your life if you want to make room for the new. I’m not expecting a gym superhero to show up (my old gym boyfriend looked like Superman…). I’m just accepting that it’s over. And I’ll move on.

Maybe I’ll even start real relationships with actual people that I speak full sentences to.

I dunno. That seems like a lot of work and I don’t want to further stress myself during this already difficult time.

Gym Boyfriend

You guys. I totally have a boyfriend. A real one.

At least… he’s totally real. The boyfriend part might be a stretch. At least in his mind. Since he doesn’t really know I exist.

Let me explain.

I’ve been trying to go to the gym at about the same time every day in an effort to create a better routine for myself. I started going around the same time every morning. I did this before my favorite gym closed. While I was over there, I noticed a guy who was getting personal training around this time of day. I mostly noticed him because he boxes and does intense exercises with his trainer in the same room where I’m trying to stretch, relax, and act like I’m bettering myself. He made me feel bad for working so hard, so I didn’t like him. But isn’t that how every great romantic comedy starts?

I probably saw him twice before my gym closed down and I had to start going at the same time  to another nearby gym.

And you guys… He’s made the move to this gym, too.

I was so excited to see a familiar face from my old gym that I think I may have started thinking we were closer than we are. Because now while I’m doing my stretches in the other gym’s multi-purpose room and he’s working really hard with his trainer, I feel like we’re bonding. Like it’s a date or something.

He’s like super strong and sweaty. I like a man who works hard. He doesn’t look up much from his workout because he’s so focused. But I like a man who can focus. He usually wears the same outfit or variations on it. I like a man who keeps his style simple.

I even told my girlfriends about him. I told them that we meet at the same time every morning for our gym dates. So far it’s Monday through Thursday. I’m not sure about Fridays. I’ve missed our last few dates. Shame on me, I know. I’m sure he has been like totally heartbroken.

One day, I walked to the women’s locker room and accidentally caught him as he was walking out of the men’s locker room right across the hall. I smiled and blushed. I didn’t want him to think I was following him! But I couldn’t miss out on my opportunity for contact! He made eye contact with me then looked away. I marked the date on my calendar because I know he’ll appreciate me keeping track of stuff we need to celebrate like that. You know, once we’re married and everything.

I saw his trainer last Saturday when I was at the gym. I think his trainer may actually be starting to recognize me. Which is embarrassing… though I’m not quite sure why. But it is. He was not training my gym boyfriend that day. He was training some other lady. We made eye contact, but I quickly looked away. I didn’t want him telling my gym boyfriend that I’ll just make eye contact with anyone! I’m totally taken, dude. Back off.

I highly suggest everyone get a gym significant other. It’s great motivation to get yourself to the gym. Then you, too, can be as happy as I clearly am in my delusion.