Two Stories: A Letter to All of You

It’s storytime, guys. Gather ’round.

Story #1

Back after I had my first baby, I was discouraged with the excessive baby weight I’d gained and that was not melting off as easily as I’d hoped. I decided to try out running, and found myself REALLY enjoying it for far more than the calorie-torching benefits. I loved how it made me feel. So after a few weeks of consistently running 3 or 4 days a week, I decided I wanted to do something crazy: I was going to run a half marathon.

It was March. I read up on training plans, the kind of shoes I’d need, and how to fuel up on long runs. I found and printed dozens of free training plans and finally settled on one that I thought I could handle and that could get me to where I could run 13.1 miles without dying. I was PUMPED.

As any runner knows, it really is worth the money to invest in good running shoes. It just so happened that there was a specialty running store in my town, and I decided to go there to get fitted for shoes. So I bounced on in and told the man in the store that I’d began running, had printed out a running plan, had a goal to run my first half marathon in the fall, and needed some good shoes.

He looked me up and down then snickered. “You’re going to need a lot more than a training plan if you’re going to try a half marathon,” he said.

My cheeks burned and I fought back tears as he smirked at me. I regretted walking through that door—no, even Googling the words “half marathon.” Who was I kidding? I was packing around 30 more pounds than I ever had in my life and was totally new to running. Of course he was laughing. I was laughable. Pathetic. A joke. After an embarrassingly long silence, he grumbled. “Well, let me show you a few options.”

I should have walked out on him, but I was too mortified to do anything but nod numbly as he pulled a few models off the shelf to show me. Once he’d showed me three or four, I mumbled that I’d maybe come back another day and shuffled out the door. I felt like garbage. It took me another week to even work up the motivation to go running. I did eventually buy myself some running shoes (but not from that store!) and went on to complete that half marathon that fall as well as several others in the years since.

 

 

But even so, I’ll never forget how stupid, how embarrassed, how crushed I felt when that horrible man at DeBoer’s Shoes treated me that way.

Story #2

Back at the end of November I bought PIIT28. It looked awesome. I tried a few of the workouts, and it WAS awesome! I was so excited to jump in. I wanted to get strong, blast off my remaining few baby pounds, and earn the cute finisher tank so that every time I wore it to work out I could remember that I finished something I started.

Then it got hard and the holidays made healthy eating tough, so I stopped for a few days then decided to jump back in.

Then that happened again.

And again.

It’s now mid-January. I’ve been posting daily on Instagram as part of the requirement to earn the PIIT28 tank top. I had a similar “I’ve-been-eating-badly-so-I-should-quit” freak out to my similar ones and decided to restart PIIT but just keep going with #piitstagram because it’d be WAY to embarrassing to admit there or on this blog that I had failed AGAIN. I told myself simply keep going with my 28 days of posts and then send away for the tank but then only let myself wear it once I actually finished all 28 days of workouts.

But it felt wrong.

I have a lot of shortcomings, but I don’t think being a liar is one of them. And I couldn’t keep posting away on Instagram and pretending everything was great and I was rocking my workouts if it wasn’t true. So I came clean on Instagram and announced that I was in fact starting over even again though I felt like a total joke for doing it. And what happened next amazed me.

You guys were all SO NICE. Look at this screenshot of some of the comments I got!

I can’t even believe how kind the POP Pilates/PIIT community as well as the readers of this blog as a whole are. The supportive, sincere, nonjudgmental encouragement that has come pouring in has completely floored me. I thought people would write me off as the non-committed loser I feel like I am. I expected the kind of snickering response I got from that awful running store man, but instead found that I have a whole flock of friends cheering me on and believing in me.

Thank you, thank you all for your example. I want to be kinder because I know you all. And I want to keep going with PIIT28 so I can announce to you all on February 11 that with your support and love, I made it! Thank you for helping me believe in myself and be kind to myself, because those are 2 things I still struggle with quite a bit. You are all incredible. Thank you, thank you for being in my life!

Love,

Sarah

Happy New Year!

Welcome to 2017!!! Who else is psyched for a brand new year?

New year, new planner! I LOVE PLANNERS. In case you didn’t know.

My [Updated] 2017 Resolution

This is actually a big-time revision of my post that originally went up on January 1. In the past I’ve done a lot of restarting and replanning that amounted to nothing more than me being scared of committing or not being perfect. But this time I’m altering my plans for what I think is a completely legitimate and awesome reason. I dove into 2017 with a slightly different project in mind, but week 1 of January I was hit by a totally unexpected idea . . .

For years I’ve loved all things Blogilates. I discovered Cassey Ho’s website and YouTube channel back when I was still in college. In the years since she’s become one of the most famous and influential people on YouTube, thanks to the quality of her workouts (they are HARD!) and her fun personality. And in 2015 she announced that she had developed her own workout method, POP Pilates, and a program you could do to certify in it and then teach POP classes. How cool is that?

As I began my PIIT28 workouts this week, I couldn’t shake the thought that getting certified would be really, really cool. And that maybe I could do it. And soon. So I’ve decided that 2017 is the year I’m going to dream big: I’m going to get POP Pilates certified!

 

 

 

What is POP Pilates?

What exactly is POP Pilates, you ask? It’s the style of workout done in PIIT28 and other Blogilates videos. Basically, it’s a faster paced, more upbeat version of traditional Pilates. And it is a LOT of fun!

I’ve quietly had the dream of becoming a POP Pilates instructor ever since Cassey released her POP Pilates Certification workshops. But I never even dared say it out loud. I still remember reading Cassey’s initial blog post about it and thinking, “Wow. That would be so cool. But it could never be me.”

I figured (1) it was too expensive, and (2) you need to be super skinny and look like a fitness model to teach fitness classes. But I finally dared peek at the pricing, and it’s a chunk of change I’ll have to save up, but not nearly as crazy as I expected. And number 2? The whole message of POP Pilates is that exercise is about feeling strong and beautiful and powerful at any weight. I’m going to embrace that idea wholeheartedly and dare to dream that I could actually teach fitness classes. I think it looks like a ton of fun, and I think teaching POP Pilates would be a great way for me to keep preaching the message that you don’t need to starve to be fit, pretty, and happy. You guys know I’m passionate about this, and I want to spread what I believe in any way I can.

What Will It Take to Get Me Certified?

To become a POP instructor, I’ll need to attend a training workshop. These are held in a variety of U.S. cities throughout the year, so I’ll pick the date and place that works best and make a little solo weekend vacay out of it (thank you SkyMiles card!). Along with the workshop are a bunch of online training materials I’ll need to work with as well. And last of all, I’ll need to submit a video of me teaching to be evaluated. If my video gets a passing grade, I’m certified!

As I mentioned above, I’m not letting what I look like be a barrier to becoming certified. However, I do want to make sure I’m strong and fit and in excellent physical condition before I start my training. POP Pilates is no joke! If I’m going to be teaching these classes, I need to be at least back to my pre-Scarlett fitness level so that I can do the routines with good form and be able to instruct and cue as I’m going. So I’m tacking a part 1 onto my resolution: complete six rounds of PIIT28 during the first six months of the year. I’m going to go through a rotation of the PIIT28 workouts that will carry me from now through July 1. That way, when the time comes to begin prepping for the workshop I’ll attend in late summer or fall, I’ll be physically ready to own it and execute those POP workouts with grace and power. So part 1 of 2017 is to GET STRONG, and part 2 is to GET CERTIFIED! 🙂

And You Can Help Me!

So there’s one little thing y’all could do to help me with this, and I’m just going to be upfront about it.  I’ve included links that allow you to buy both PIIT28 as well as Popflex Activewear. If you read my posts and think PIIT28 would actually be a good fit for you, or if you see some of the clothes I’m wearing or yoga mats I’m using in posts and want them, clicking on the links on my blog to complete your purchase rather than going to the site through a different way helps me out. Please don’t buy anything you don’t genuinely want. This is not a Scentsy party. 😉 But if you actually intend to buy anything PIIT28 or Popflex related, doing it through my links gives me a small commission. And what am I going to use the money I earn for? You guessed it—my POP Pilates certification.

And, once I’m at this point of the process, I’m going to need to shoot my evaluation video. Any of you readers who live near me here in Utah would be more than welcome to be the students in my video!  I’ll let you know how that will all work out once I get to that point, but I think it’s going to be fun to hold practice classes and then film with friends and family and readers.

So yeah. That’s my crazy ambitious new plan for 2017. No more replanning, no more restarting, and no turning back! January 1, 2018 is going to find me as a POP Pilates instructor as well as the ultimate fittest and strongest version of myself possible. I am really, really excited!

I’m not going to lie—this goal feels a tad overwhelming. But you know, I think I can do it if I just focus on each day one day at a time. And if I ever doubt, or if you doubt your own ability to meet your 2017 dreams and goals, we can all remember that this cute lil’ chubster believes in us. I was trying to get Scarlett to smile for the camera but her baby fist bump ended up making for an unintentionally epic picture. 🙂

 

Let’s go get 2017! YEAH!!!