Hasta La Vista To Two Favorites

“You can’t depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.”

― Mark Twain, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court

The imagination is a powerful force?  Creativity, ingenuity, and unlimited possibilities occur as a result of positive usage of the imagination. However, negative energy can lead the imagination to produce fear, anxiety, and skepticism.

At least twice this past week, thoughts of having to change two of my favorite routines, clouded my vision.

The first had to do with music. At the end of a workout session, a chit-chat with my trainer stunned me.

Trainer:  When I return from vacation, you can’t use “that” (pointing to my iPod) any more.

Me:  Stunned.  Is she kidding, I’m thinking.

Trainer:   We’re about 9 weeks out and we need to take this training to another level.

Me: Whiney like a little kid use to having her way. Oh no! Music motivates me.  I do eeeeverthing with music.  Run, eat, sleep, etc…

Trainer:    She kicked into “mommy/drill sergeant mode.”   Well, you’ll just have to learn to use your mind to motivate yourself.

It was as if she ended her sentence with, “Period! End of discussion!  I don’t want to hear any more from you!” LOL!  Oh boy!!

For now... bye-bye iPod!

For now… bye-bye iPod!

While driving to the gym for my first day of working out with her without music, I thought about her orders. Frustration settled in and I thought about challenging her on her decision.  The entire drive, I turned up the volume and blasted the music while trying to store up the good feel from the base and series of favorite tunes.  I know.  Sounds ridiculous, but it’s true. I think everyone has that one “thing” that infuses a sense of comfort, support, and motivation.  My “thing” is music.

I was even silly enough to question myself on how I would be able to push through the last and most difficult reps while deprived of a rhythmic beat and inspiring lyrics. Smh!

Within 20 minutes of the workout, I forgot all about my routine of one ear being pounced with heavy base. I was no longer distracted (my trainer’s words not mine) by the volume or finding the right track before completing a set. I moved swiftly and without delay. I had a great workout.

Today I did two sets of drop-downs arm curls on the cable machine starting with 90 pounds!  No music and.. a personal best for me. Whoop! Whoop! High-five!!! Thanks for the push coach!

I imagined the process and the outcome to be all WRONG.

Sugar free java

Sugar free java

At around 7 o’clock this morning, I think. Correction.  I know that I drank my last sugar laced cup of coffee.  Erroneously I convinced myself that, while training, I’d be okay using Sugar In The Raw in my coffee.  But the fact is, sugar IS sugar.

imagined that regardless of having a splash of Bailey’s, my favorite flavored creamer, my organic freshly ground coffee would taste bitter and less satisfying.  Hmm…  How many ways can I say wrong?  Incorrect. Mistaken.  Amiss.  And so on… just like my imagination.  I enjoyed my java no less than I did yesterday.  I am surprised but happy.  🙂

My favorite coffee and mug

My favorite coffee and mug

It is ironic how I consider myself to be a positive thinker. Yet two times this week when I was required to do something different from what I LOVE and from my norm, that I  conjured up  negative thoughts about the changes. 

What’s up with that? When it comes to work, I constantly look for new solutions to old challenges and seek out better ways to get the job done.  But I now realize that it may not occur automatically on a more personal level.  Wait, wait wait.  Thinking about this even more, the thoughts of a negative outcome happens when the change is a directive from someone other than myself.  Yeah, that’s probably it.

I just realized this self-defeating behavior/attitude about myself.  Wow! I need to pay closer attention to my thoughts and get this mess in check.

See, this is exactly why I love writing.  All that stuff in my head gets sorted out on paper or on the keyboard.

The week ended with two successes.  While my successes may seem minor, the payoff for making both changes are big and will move me closer to accomplishing my goal of placing tops in May’s figure competition.

My arms feel like lead from this mornings workout, so after dinner a nap is in order–something I rarely get. Tomorrow morning it’s back to the gym for training and posing practice.

Enjoy your weekend!

Reads About Sugar

Sugar in the Raw That’s Not | The Healthy Home Economist

Difference Between Brown Sugar & Sugar in the Raw 

Nutrition Diva:  Is Natural Sugar Better for You?

Is Sugar Bad For A Bodybuilder?

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Chance meeting or not?

I love traveling.  Meeting new folks, acquiring different perspectives about people, places, cultures, and simply learning about the unknowns. The opportunities feed my wish to learn.  The same manner that people share with me, I like to do the same.

I am convinced and believe in destiny. The older I become, the more I understand that there is no such idea of chance.

When I experience a calm mental state of being, my sense of awareness increases. I tend to hear and listen to my instinct and inner voice and avoid external distractions.  The state of being grants me the opportunity to interact with people and to encounter what is meant for me to experience.

As I compose this on my iPoodle (Acer tablet), I am sitting in Orlando, Florida’s airport at Gate 31 waiting to board my plane back to New Jersey.

I strike up a conversation with Laura, who looks to be around my age, sitting next to me.   One pleasantry after another we chat and before I knew it, my son, Tailor chimed in on our conversation. He told her about our puppy Alex.  Pulling out his DS, he showed Laura pictures of Alex.  His animated chatter raised her brow and put a huge warm smile on Laura’s face.

“Your hair is beautiful!” Laura commented.   I smiled and thanked her.   She shared a picture of her new puppy, which was being held by a curly-haired, adorable little brown-skinned girl.  The adorable five-year old is her daughter, of whom she adopted.

In less than 10 minutes into our conversation, Laura and I discovered that while we looked very different and live poles apart, we share a few commonalities.  Laura Caucasian with pretty blue eyes on her way to Cleveland… me… well you know… brown-skinned, brown-eyed, curly girl from New Jersey…  had several qualities in common.

So what was the purpose of us sitting next to one another?   Laura has no experience in working with curly locks like her daughters.  She wanted to know how I style my hair and the type of products that I use.    I respect her so much for asking.

To be frank with you, I am often disturbed when I see a child of color, whose parents are walking around with untamed locks.  I try not to judge but wonder in frustration why the adult is not maintaining the child’s hair.  Sometimes I assume that they haven’t taken the opportunity to seek out the answers. Assuming is wrong; I know.

I am so impressed by Laura’s wish to seek out the best and healthiest solutions for her adorable bi-racial curly girl’s hair.  I graciously applaud her.

So many woman of color seek out quick solutions and erroneously and prematurely slap the crack (chemical) on what they perceive to be unmanageable hair of very young girls.  Why?  Because it’s easier than the daily battle of pulling through course, tight, and resistant hair. Because they lack the knowledge of the proper hair care curly locks.   Because our daughters see “straight hair” on television, in magazines, and on cereal boxes and want to look like what they are misled to believe is “normal.” Others want their little girl to have the long braided pigtails with a dozen or so colorful dangling bows.

Still Laura has chosen to find better and healthier solutions for her daughter.  I began to share my natural hair care knowledge with Laura.  We lost track of time and before we knew it, her flight was boarding so our chat was abruptly interrupted.  Time did not permit for me to give her the name of the products I use or the websites, etc…  So I gave her my email address and invited her to contact me to get the rest of the information.  I hope to hear from Laura; there is much for us to talk about.

She was happy to connect with someone who may be able to help and I was equally pleased that along my travels that I could help someone.

There is something innate within me that is greatly placated when I help others.   I don’t know what or why, it just does and it feels really good.

I believe that divinity placed Laura and I in the airport together and our meeting was meant to be. Laura’s desire to seek specific knowledge has put her in a place to receive it. She will continue to gain the wisdom simply by way of quest. My life experiences have taught me this; I know.

When we seek answers and knowledge, the process of “seeking” will draw the wisdom that we desire.

        “Use your life as a class.”
-Oprah Winfrey