25 February 2013

on health and fitness (take one)


I've been debating about talking about this for awhile now. My main reason not to being that I don't want people telling me what I'm doing wrong. Everyone seems to be an expert when it comes to health and fitness -- they tell you the do's and don'ts and the ins and outs of what you should and shouldn't be doing even if they're not really too sure themselves. But if I've learned one thing through all of the things that I've shared in this space of mine before, it's that I receive far more encouragement than doubt or negativity.

So here's the thing: Since the New Year, and I guess even before that, I've been working more on becoming a healthier and more active person. There comes a point in your life when you just have to stop procrastinating and actually do what you've been meaning to do all that time, and this year was that point for me. 

I mentioned in a post awhile back that my best friend and I were training for a 5K this summer, and we're working towards it slowly; starting off with walking 30 minutes every weekday for 15 days, then progressing to walking 5 minutes, running 1 minute every weekday for 15 days, and so on, until eventually we'll (hopefully) be running the entire 30 minutes. We've also been doing a small round of workouts that I found online which includes jumping jacks, push ups, sit ups, and planking. 

It's a little frustrating to start off so slowly when all I want to do is run, but we're doing it this way so we don't push ourselves too hard and hurt ourselves. But even as slowly as we're starting, it's still making a difference, and that's what counts, right? 

I had some old jeans of my sisters that were a few sizes too small, and I kept them as motivation. I tried on those jeans today, and they fit. Tightly, but they fit. And that is my motivation to keep going. Waking up at 5:30 in the morning sucks. Walking/running outside in the freezing cold rain at 5:30 in the morning sucks. Not eating what I want to when I want to sucks. But trying on those jeans and feeling more energized and noticing a difference? That definitely does not suck. And I bet the feeling of victory after completing that 5K in August won't suck either. So here goes. We got this! 

22 February 2013

it goes like this

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A group message is sent and plans are made to meet at our favourite coffee shop. When we get there, we ditch our coats and have a seat, our cheeks quickly warming as we escape the cold that is winter in BC. We walk up to the counter one by one. The cute boy behind it asks us what we'd like and without missing a beat, all four of us respond with, "A London Fog, please". Then we sit. We sip our drinks and dip our over-sized cookies. We talk and laugh and sometimes cry. Then we go for dinner-- the fun extending for another few hours as we sit around a big table and talk and laugh and sometimes cry some more. At the end of the night, we say our goodbyes. We hug and exchange see-you-at-school's and go our separate ways.

I've never known what the others were thinking, but I've found myself wondering every once in awhile if anyone has written about the four girls who meet monthly for hot drinks and dinner. And if they have, what would they have written?

12 February 2013

defining beauty

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I've been thinking about writing a post like this for some time now, and even had one all written up and edited to perfection only to press "control z" and have the whole thing erased. I was angry and frustrated because the post that I worked so hard on was gone and I didn't feel like sitting down to try and remember what it is that I had written. But the thing is, what I wrote about is important. And while I may have felt like my words were spoken, I was the only one who heard them. So here goes. Round two:

There are so many young people these days that constantly feel as if they have to compare themselves to others. So many girls who think that they aren't pretty enough or skinny enough or smart enough or funny enough or just enough. And that's a problem. 

We all look into the mirror sometimes and aren't satisfied with what we see. We all have those moments of insecurity, those battles within ourselves of whether or not we fit the criteria for beauty, and those moments of insecurity are okay. We're not all going to feel our best 24/7 and we're not going to stop comparing ourselves to others. But when those moments of insecurity outweigh those moments of confidence, well, that becomes a problem. The things is, beauty isn't everything. Not all of us are going to be 5'8" with straight blonde hair and blue eyes the colour of the ocean. Not all of us are going to weigh 120 pounds and have clear skin and perfect eyebrows. Not all of us can be the most stylish or funniest or prettiest or smartest. But we can be ourselves, and I think that's far more important than any title we can be given. You can be you. You can find your strengths and weaknesses and own them.

I guess the important thing that we all have to remember is that the definition of beauty is different for everyone. It isn't what the dictionary tells you. It isn't what your mom or teacher or best friend tells you. It's not so much about what you see, but how you feel and act and communicate. It's far more about what's on the inside than the out. It's just hard to remember that sometimes. 

10 February 2013

the man on the bus

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I remember this one day last summer. My best friend and I were on the bus, going downtown for a day of adventuring. There was a young man that got on and sat across from us. He had a backpack that was nearly as big as he was and he looked a little bewildered. I remember looking at him and wondering what his story was. I do that sometimes. The bus went to the next stop and picked up an older woman and an older man in a wheelchair. The young man sitting across from us moved over so that the older woman could put up the seats of the bus so the older mans wheelchair would fit in safely. Once seated, the woman, who spoke with an incredibly strong accent that I later learned was German, commented on how the young man looked like he had his entire life on his back. He nodded and explained, in a strong accent of his own, how he's from Europe and is travelling abroad for three months. She asked him where he was from and they discovered that she was originally from right around where he is. They talked about his travels and how he's enjoying being abroad and how much longer he's out here for. I listened, without saying a word, just watching two interesting strangers with interesting stories have a conversation. With tears in my eyes, I leaned over to my best friend and whispered to her that someday, I want that to be me. I want to be travelling abroad with a backpack nearly as big as me. I want to be on a bus or a train in the middle of what would be nowhere to me, talking to strangers about my travels and how I got there and where I've been. I wonder if that young man knows if I was listening to them on that warm August day. I wonder if he knows that he inspired me to travel abroad myself. I wonder if he went home after those three months and told his family and friends all about his time away. I wonder if he told them about the older woman on the bus and their conversation. I wonder where he is now. And I wonder if he realizes how a simple conversation between two strangers can be etched into an onlookers brain, stored away as a fading memory, until one day, she decides to write about it on a cool winter's night.

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Something I wrote in December. I still think about him sometimes. I don't think some people understand how much something they do or say can impact and change someones life. 

06 February 2013

currently

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Working on working out! My best friend and I have joined forces to motivate each other in getting fit. We've set an end goal of running a 5K (this one, to be specific) in August, which is a huge improvement from the barely 1K that I'm able to run right now. I call her at 5:30 in the morning and we both go out and do our thing, then report back to each other. It's worked wonders, motivation-wise, so far.

Loving my new classes! The second semester started this week and I'm loving all of my new classes and teachers. Right now I have Foods, French, English, and a spare block, and all have been going well so far! 

Watching all of the episodes of my favourite shows that I've missed in the past few months. I had a Pretty Little Liars, Vampire Diaries, and Heartland marathon this weekend (and yes, I do realize that I watch pathetic shows). 

Looking forward to the long weekend this weekend! 

Listening to "One Day/Reckoning Song" by Asaf Avidan. I just found it a couple of days ago and it quickly became my new favourite!

Reading "Out of my Mind" by Sharon M. Draper. I just started it today, but so far, so good! 

What are you currently working on, loving, watching, looking forward to, listening to, or reading? :)

03 February 2013

on top of the world at pipers lagoon

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We chased the sun down to the ocean a few weeks ago. It was a last minute decision, an ocean craving that just had to be satisfied. The air was cold and full of fog. Corbin's hands were wrapped in blue gloves that were five times too big for him. He insisted that we climb the "mountains" and once we did, stated that we were on top of the world. Technically speaking, we may not have been, but it felt like we were, so I was happy to agree.

The beach in the winter doesn't hold the same effect as it does come summertime. The ocean isn't as blue, the sunsets not as vivid, and the skies are more than likely to be overcast. It's dark and grey and cold and eerie, but beautiful nonetheless.

I love my ocean-- light or dark, warm or cold, it's always enchanting, and I'll always want to be near it. 

01 February 2013

untold stories from NYC

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Oh, New York City. I have so many memories and untold stories from the five days I spent there in August. Things I just want to write down before they're forgotten and lost in the depths of my brain. Little things, funny things, good things.

Like how I dropped my pizza on the floor at Ray's Pizza, and all the workers did was laugh as they put another piece into the oven for me and gave it to me free of charge.

Or how we thought that all of the drivers that honked and winked at us from inside their shiny black cars with tinted windows wanted to seduce us, only to realize later, by a kind man who gave us directions in Brooklyn, that they were short limos and saw our suitcases and thought that we needed a ride somewhere.

Or how, on our last night, when we were taking the subway from the city to our apartment in Brooklyn, we got completely lost and ended up somewhere in Queens. And how there were only three or so people in our car, so we put our Statue of Liberty hats on and swung around the poles, dancing and singing and acting like the tourists that we were as my mom shook her head and pretended that she didn't know us.

Or how, every five seconds, one of us would say, "guess what?", to which the answer was always, "we're in New York!".

Or how we bought $9 worth of froyo in a little store in the heart of Times Square, and how we ate it outside at night under the flashing lights.

Or how we got lost in Central Park and couldn't find The Top of The Rock for the life of us and asked someone for directions on how to get to Times Square only for them to tell us that we were in it.

Or how the first three taxis that we got into asked us for directions.

Or how I nearly tripped and fell onto the tracks in the subway station and a strange man told us the proper way to stay safe if you ever fall down there when the subway is coming (you lay as flat as you can in the very middle, for those who want to know).

There isn't a day that goes by that I don't think of New York. I can't wait for the day that my heart gets reacquainted with the part of it that was left there this summer.