Thursday, December 26, 2013

Twenty Thirteen ~ A Year Turned Upside-down


Escape Aerial Arts

The end of the year has always been a time for reflection. But this year has been so busy I've hardly had a moment to think, let alone reflect. I sit here now, the day after Christmas, finishing up an export on a course I've been QA'ing, watching the kids play with their new games and planning New Years promotions for the studio. It's been nuts to say the least. I'm still slaving full time in the cube farm, raising a toddler and a teenager and getting a brand new business up and running. Is it a lot? Yes. Is it worth it? Yes. So, let's begin.

2013 (A year in pole) started with a certification class in New York to become a pole fitness instructor. I may have come home looking like I spent the weekend throwing punches with Tyson but I surprised myself with the tricks I was able to pull off during that class. I also made some great connections and saw NY City for the first time (by myself!).

When I got home I didn't have a home studio to come back to. It was a case of bad management and no place else in the area to turn. So my skills got a little rusty. But I had decided this was something I want to persue, so if the local pole studio won't work, I'll open my own! It was an ambitious thought. Luckily, my amazing pole instructor, Maggie was on board.

Maggie and I found our first possible location in the early summer. We put a lot of work into cleaning it up and getting ready only to find out it didn't have the proper handicapped access to be open to the public. So after a lot of politics we begrudgingly decided to move on. 

We found 3 Kelley Square in Worcester in early fall. They were eager for us to move in and things moved along fairly quickly. We opened September 5th. Our progress so far has been slow and steady and I LOVE every single one of our clients. It seems more like a growing family then a growing business. (Except a few little snags in the road - namely a bathroom dispute with our elderly neighbor but that's another story.)

However, I've found that working full time, being a mom and running a business doesn't leave much actual pole time for me. By the end of the day I'm just to tired to practice. My pole progress has pretty much been on hold. This was a necessity this year to accomplish my other goals, but in 2014, I'm making more time for me.

2013 was the year I finally started to do A LOT of research into Nutrition. What is REALLY healthy? What does an active body need to fuel itself? How do I become as healthy as I possibly can be? I did two Whole 30 challenges. I won't go to that extreme again, but I believe it did teach me how good I could feel just by cutting certain foods out. And I now know what those foods are. Processed foods are out. I've found I'm at my best when I cut out dairy, sugar and gluten. So that will be amongst my goals for the new year. I've fallen far from grace since Thanksgiving but I'm ready to jump back on the wagon!

Let's take a look at the actual Goals I set for myself in January, 2013 (I was a pole baby!)

Excerpt from "2012 - My Pole Inception" 

"Ok, here we go, pole goals for 2013:
~ Spend 2- 3 days per week at the studio for at least 2 hours each day
(ok, not so much)
~ Chopper, chopper, chopper!  (Closer! Still need to work on this)
~ Convert to a mostly paleo diet to help build muscle and advance (Done)
~ Attend pole jams and workshops outside my comfort zone (YES! Sam Star, Pippi, Head Over Heels Troupe, Jamilla Daville)
~ Go to X-Pole training session in January and make the most of it!!! (BOOM! I am a certified instructor!)
~ Make it through intermediate pole to advanced (Not quite yet)
~ Try an Aerial hoop (Tried and LOVED!)
~ Perfect climbing (both pole and silks) (I wouldn't say Perfect)
~ Remember to take things slow (Done! Mostly)
~ Make new pole friends and continue to be inspired! (Yes, yes, yes!!!)

I'm really excited about the upcoming year. I feel big changes on the horizon, I can't wait to share them with all of you."


So I didn't make them all... but the goals I did make I exceeded!!! Over all I'm very proud of what I accomplished in 2013 and I am very excited about setting my goals for the upcoming year. (Look for my goals in an upcoming post!)

There's so much more I want to talk about but this post would be way too long! There was Milan Summer Pole Camp in St. Martin with Karol Helms and Prana. There were workshops with Dakota and Amber from Head Over Heels, My favorite Aussie, Jamilla Deville, Soma Systems, Fly Gym.... Don't even get me started on the magic that is "The Pole Dancing Bloggers Association". Sweet Escape!!! I will create some posts going over each of these coming up, as I haven't had the brain compacity to write about them in much detail as they were happening.

Overall I'm so proud of Escape Aerial Arts and I hope you come along with me for the ride that the upcoming year will be. I want to share the journey with all of you, as you were all a part of what made 2013 amazing!!

XOXOXO - Elysabeth (The Flying Bambinee)

Monday, October 21, 2013

Escape Event ~ Soma Systems Workshop

As I sit here and write this I can easily pick out about 20 muscles that could use some good kneading. I spend way too much time sitting in front of this little flashbox and my back pays the price. There isn't always someone around to help out with a good massage, which is why I've been in the market for ways to melt away tension on my own. I've tried rollers, tennis balls, socks full of marbles... all have been ok but not amazing. This is why I'm super excited about the Soma System workshops coming to Escape Aerial Arts November 9th. I haven't yet tried this system my self, but everyone I've spoken to about the system has amazing reviews.


The benefit of Soma System for you if you are:
* Athletic or in a physically-demanding line of work: You may get a performance boost as a result of better-nourished muscles, improved proprioception, and more restful sleep.
 * A health professional: You’ll learn to care for yourself after a long shift, and If it’s within your scope of practice, you can share relevant techniques with your clients and patients. If they want to know more, you’ll have access to materials on this website and links to published studies that affirm Soma System’s core concepts.
 * A yogi or meditation practitioner: The mindfulness component of Soma System may support deeper and more subtle experiences in your yoga and/or meditation practice.
* Human: As your practice matures and your body strengthens, the deepest unconscious layers of muscle guarding will likely relent. Gains will show up in different parts of your life: maybe you’ll have more endurance, better posture, more flexibility, better respiratory function. You may sleep better and thus become more patient. Of course there’s no silver bullet; you’ll still be human, entirely capable of having good days and bad, headaches and fatigue, but Soma System will equip you with the tools needed to meet those challenges.

Escape will be offering 2 workshops this November:
 Hips & Hammies Workshop for Aerial Artists Melt away tightness in your hips and hammies with two hours of deep tissue Soma System practice–a holistic self-bodywork method that fuses movement and meditation with the use of specially-designed tools. Restore balance along the back of your body by elongating your neck; settling your shoulders; unbinding tension in your lower back and hips (especially your psoas); promoting glide and mobility deep in your hamstrings; and grounding through the feet to manifest stability in each step.
Shoulders & Spine Workshop for Aerial Artists Aerial Dancers and Pole Athletes: Melt away tightness in your shoulders and spine with two hours of deep tissue Soma System practice–a holistic self-bodywork method that fuses movement and meditation with the use of specially-designed tools. Restore lightness from your toes to your head by unlocking your hips and lengthening your abdomen; giving a lift to your ribcage and chest (extra emphasis on pec minor!); and thoroughly unwinding fascial restriction in your shoulder girdle, neck, and arms.

Join us before the busy holiday season sets in and learn how to:
1. Identify your areas of restriction (by drawing your attention into your body)
2. Release your restrictions with Soma System tools and techniques
3. Circulate oxygen and nutrients throughout your body to promote healing
4. Flush out inflammation and accumulated acidic metabolic waste
5. Restore your health, mobility, posture, and sleep
Enjoy these benefits:
  • Increases: Circulation, energy, flexibility, range of motion, body awareness.
  • Decreases: Stress, muscle spasms, inflammation, tissue adhesions, pain.
  • Improves: Posture, sleep, movement, breathing, mobility, balance, athletic performance.
I will post results after the workshops! You can read them here, or JOIN US and experience them for yourself!
XOXO

 

Friday, October 11, 2013

Bringing Sexy Back or Taking Sexy out??? November Blog Hop (& SEXY GIVEAWAY!!!!)

The battle within... Less Sexy??? More Sporty??? Let's face it, pole is all of that. Sexy, emotional and athletic. And then some.

There's no denying if you've ever been to a pole class (done right) that pole dancing is a form of expressiveness as well as gymnastics. You dance. You must be able to control all of your muscles. Lifting your body weight to smoothly and safety perform poses and transitions that come together to create a beautiful routine. All of this at the expense of your poor bruised feet, ankles, shins, knees, hips, waist, armpits, neck, etc. Pain aside, performers train for hours every day to improve their technique. This takes a certain type of.... dedication. These are athletes.

As I am still fairly new to the pole world my thoughts on the subject of sexiness and pole fitness were simple. If you want to dance sexy, dance sexy. If you have a more athletic style, more power to you. But just recently I was shown exactly how much the sanitization of pole dance is actually affecting the sport.
Last Monday my studio had the pleasure of hosting Australian pole star, Jamilla Daville. We worked through a choreography routine where she taught us to do a little "bounce" after landing in a split to make up for landing early. Everyone in class loved this sexy little move and wanted to do it each time we performed the routine, early to the drop or not.

When Jamilla said you would be marked down in a competition for a bounce like this because it was "suggestive" I was shocked.. "Take the fun, flirty part of the routine that all the girls loved and wanted to do out... you will get a better score." Say what?! All the athleticism is still there, there's just some sexy thrown in. Should we be marked down for that if that is our style, our way of expressing ourselves? Isn't that art?? Isn't there room for both sexiness and sportiness in the pole world, intertwined?

It's an intoxicating mix, the obvious fitness bonuses of strength, endurance, flexibility & killer abs — with, well … sexiness.

 I understand the other side. The only way to get the sport to be seen as legitimate is through strict rules. A dress code, a catalog of acceptable poses. Sexual movements needed to be outlawed to some degree at this point for the sport to be considered a sport. Hopefully this will change. Competitions aside at least pole class can still be a safe place to express yourself. 

Here's the giveaway part!!!! If you love sexy or want to experience it but are a little intimidated, Escape Aerial Arts is hosting USPDF Miss Sexy 2010, Karol Helms on Sunday October 20th
We are so excited to be giving away a pair of tickets to the Meet & Greet Pole Jam with Karol! This is your chance to play on the pole along side of USPDF Miss Sexy 2010, take pictures with her, get autographs, and experience an up-close and personal LIVE performance by one of the country’s top pole performers! a Rafflecopter giveaway This Meet & Greet is co-ed, bring your significant other so they can get a taste of what you are aspiring to be and working so hard toward!

Monday, September 16, 2013

Beauty, Body and Wellness


Septembers blog hop topic is "Beauty, Body & Wellness". It's been awhile since I've participated in the blog hop and I've missed it tons!! This was a perfect topic to jump back in on because since I began pole a little over a year ago, I have really started paying close attention to what goes in, on or around my body.

The
I'm just past the midpoint of my second Whole 30 program. 30 days of whole foods. No grains, no dairy, no alcohol, no added sugar, no complaining. Being this careful about what I put in my body has also made me more careful about what I put on my body. The skin is our largest organ, it is a barrier to bad and passageway for good. In a perfect world. I have severely sensitive skin. I have suffered from Eczema since I was 20. I had to do away with scented laundry detergent, soaps, lotions, etc. through the years. Practicing pole has left me with less options for skin care, for awhile I wasn't sure I would be able to continue with the sport. I've got to go a day without putting lotion on my legs? Right, if you want an alligator on the pole. So I started to experiment. Here's what I found:

On mornings that I don't pole I will dry brush my skin before my shower. This improves circulation and removes any dead skin. I find it leaves my skin clearer and more vibrant. It also reduces the need for lotion (a little) and it just feels really good. I use Aveeno for sensitive skin in the shower, and use coconut oil as a moisturizer afterwards. In the winter when skin is extra dry I will follow that up with Eucerin Calming Cream.

On pole days I still moisturize. I love coconut oil but it is too greasy for pole days. Instead I use Aveeno moisturizer. I've found that I can use this about an hour before pole and still have a good grip (and no grease on the pole).

Some other natural beauty advice I have begun to follow since starting pole include:

Drinking a full glass of lemon water twice a day. There are so many reasons to drink lemon water including boosting the immune system. With cold and flu season coming up this is a biggie!


Coconut oil is magical. I use it for everything. Here is an incomplete list: hair treatment (I put it in my hair before bed and rinse it out in the morning), conditioner, leave in conditioner, lip gloss/moisturizer, skin moisturizer, eye makeup remover, eye cream, mouth wash (for oil pulling), toothpaste (mixed with baking soda and peppermint essential oil), cuticle cream, eczema cream, deodorant, sun block, small cuts and scrapes.... oh, and cooking!


Epsom salt baths are the key to happiness. They soothe sore muscles and the soul. I use two cups epsom salt, a cup of baking soda and a few drops of lavender essential oil. Mix in a tub of warm water. Heaven.

Magnesium is balancing. I've begun taking magnesium supplements daily, whether through the skin in a bath or as a cream, as powder in a drink or in pill form. I would recommend True Calm powder. The sugar free lemon is magical.

These are just a few of the new natural tips and tricks I've been using. I must say I feel a whole lot better than I did when I was pumping my body full of chemicals. I would recommend the Whole 30 plan to everyone. It is a great way to reset your habits and start over with a clean slate. And it's only 30 days! You can do that! ;)

Here's to health and happiness!
~ B.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Jumping back in

Ok, so it's been awhile, a long while since I've updated. The truth is that after a day of working online at the day job and then working online to get Escape set up... I DONOTWANT to be online for blogging after. But there's been lots going on!


We are planning to open Escape Aerial Arts this Saturday for an open house! It will be during Worcesters Blackstone Canal Fest. A celebration that takes place right outside our door. We will offer free classes and demos during the day. The problem is this: the damn XPoles! We had originally bought sport poles to save money. Turns out this wasn't a good idea. We are having a terrible time getting them set up, and the parts we need to make it work will be delivered tomorrow. Tomorrow is Friday. The open house is Saturday.... STRESSED. Everything else is looking pretty good. The silks are up, the Fly Gyms are ready. We have the spin poles ready to go... just those sport poles...

The
In other news... I'm doing the Whole 30 again this month! The husband and I started Sunday September 1st. Today is day is day 5 and it's been going pretty well. Last night I was really missing my wine, it's the best for de-stressing at the end of the day. But herbal tea isn't too bad a substitute. Here's what has become my favorite breakfast recipe, avocado toads in a hole!


One of my goals this month is to jump back into the Blog Hop. I've been missing it muches! Also the pole photo of the week which I was so excited about and haven't participated in yet. I am so proud to be a part of the Pole Dancing Bloggers Association and must get back to participating.



Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Train Ride Update

One good thing about taking the train to work? It gives me time to post. Something I haven't done in quite awhile. This summer has been crazy. I can't form a complete thought in my mind, forget about getting it up on the blog.

A quick sum up: painting is just about done at the studio. We have a small spot on the ceiling and we're done.

The custom rigging is being manufactured, signs are being made and I'm working on getting our point of sale software going.

We are still looking at August 17 as an opening date but if the rigging isn't done it may get pushed back another week. It's ok though, I would rather be sure our students and instructors are completely safe then open sooner!

Our schedule is now up on the website. Check it out and start planning your classes!! www.escapeaerialarts.com

Next week is Milan Summer Pole Camp! I cannot wait. I have been so absorbed in the business side of opening the studio that I haven't had much time to pole. This vacation is exactly what I need to get back into the physical sport. I have no clue how I will ever be ready for the Supershag competition in September. May have bitten off more than I can chew with that one.

Oh well, I have the Art of Sexy workshop at The Girl Spot in CT tomorrow night. Maybe I will pull some routine ideas from that.

Pulling into Back Bay, so the workday begins. 80 degrees and beautiful out, let's go spend the entire day in a drab cubicle! Weeeee.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Escape Aerial Arts, LLC ~ Giveaway Alert!!!

UPDATE 7/1/2013 - AND THE WINNER IS:
Entry #52Julie G.
 
Congratulations, Julie!! We can't wait to Escape with you!!
 
Keep watching for more giveaways and other fun stuff as we get closer to opening day!!



I can't believe June is almost over! The new pole and aerial arts studio "Escape Aerial Arts, LLC" will be opening it's door for the first time this August! Escape will be offering pole fitness classes, aerial silks, aerial yoga, fly gym, belly dance, ballet barre and hula hoop just to name a few.  An alternative to the gym, you will not only be getting stronger, leaner and more flexible,  you will be learning a new and fun skill in the process.

To celebrate the grand opening Escape Aerial Arts is giving away a free 1 month membership! This will allow you to attend any of the classes offered for 1 full month FREE!

The prize will be awarded July 1st, winner will have 1 year to cash it in for 1 month of free classes.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Share with your friends!
Escape Aerial Arts, LLC
3 Kelley Square
Worcester, MA 01610
www.escapeaerialarts.com

 

Thursday, June 20, 2013

June is almost over!

It's been a crazzzzzzzzzzzy month. Once we found our space everything started moving at super speed. Not to mention I jumped with both feet into a full metabolic conditioning and strength training regimen. I dead lifted for the first time today and it felt great! (I'm a little worried about what it will feel like tomorrow, but as of right now I can't wait to get back in there!) I have Fly Gym instructor certification this weekend, 8 hours of intensive training, I'm hoping I'm not too sore by then. But enough about me, back to the business stuff. The landlord is working on our space now. Removing the middle room, fixing up the floor, removing the cieling fans (cieling fans are NOT our friends! Think Charlie from the Willie Wonka movie!) we are supposed to be moving in as of July 1st. A week and a half! OMG. I'm not prepared!!!

I plan on getting our software set up early next week, get our insurance all set up, etc etc. I feel like I'm forgetting everything! If anyone out there has ever opened a pole/aerial studio and you feel like spreading your wisdom, please do!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Life in Rewind: Things I Would Have Told My Future Self

The Blog hop topic for June is "Things I wish I knew before I started pole dancing". My life since I began pole dancing, just 13 short months ago, has been a whirlwind. So many changes so quickly! If I could go back to that fateful day in May of 2012 this may be what the conversation with my "future self" would sound like:

Current Me: "This may sound crazy to you, but your life is about to change. Drastically. Right here, right now. You know that feeling you've been having? That nagging feeling? That feeling that something is missing? That your job isn't fulfilling and you aren't doing what you were meant to do? That your body wasn't made to sit in a cubicle all day glued to a computer under florescent lighting? All that is about to change."

 PAST ME: "I call Shenanigans! This is just one pole class. I'm sure I won't even like it. I'm going to try it just to try it. An hour workout then I go home. Nothing more"

 Current Me: "Oh, you silly, silly girl. You are about to become an addict. You will soon be attending 3+ classes per week, be covered in bruises and be loving it. Heed my advice...

* Start saving money now! Pole is an expensive hobby! There are so many cute pole clothes on the market... plus you'll have to keep your toe nails looking pretty, they'll be on display year round! Did I mention how much it costs to put a pole in the living room? And Pole camp during the summer. Plus, all those conditioning classes...

* Be ready to work HARD. Pole is a difficult sport. If you put more time and energy in from the beginning you would be much farther along when you become ME! Stay motivated and stay strong.

* Clean out the fridge and kitchen cabinets. With this new love comes a whole new perspective on food. Food is no longer all the processed junk you've been eating. "Food" is now clean, provided by nature. Food is meant to fuel your body. It is not there for you to eat as much as you can and then sit on the couch all night.

* Oh, and did I mention that in less than a year you were going to become a certified pole instructor? Yes, YOU! You who has been inactive for way too long now will be heading out to New York for a weekend of intense pole instruction. Learning how to teach, how to spot, how to motivate. Are you ready for that?!

Ooooh, and I can't forget to mention... A little over a year from now you will be opening your own pole studio! Yes, this sport is going to inspire and motivate you so much that you are going to want to spend your days teaching others the joys of pole dancing! Don't worry, your family and friends will be more than supportive. The decision you are making right now to try this class is one of the most life changing decisions you have made. Now get in there and work your butt off! Oh, and be nice to Maggie, she will be right there with your through your journey."

Of course past me would never listen to current me because past me is too stubborn to do what current me suggests. Confused? Current me too.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Studio Update - Have We Found Our Home?!

Just got back from viewing a potential studio spot with Maggie and feeling pretty good about it! It has exposed brick walls just like our original space, high ceilings, huge windows overlooking the infamous Kelley Square, lots of natural light and all the space we need! Not to mention a parking lot and lots of on street parking. It's close to lots of bars and restaurants,thrift shops, a salon and it's in the Canal district so it will be part of the carriage tours this summer. Perfect! A few things need to be ironed out with the landlord, but we may have found our new home!! SO EXCITED!!!

Friday, May 31, 2013

All Signed Up!

I just signed up for my first competition, OMG, so nervous!! How am I going to compete on stage? I have butterflies in my belly just filling out the entry form. I will be competing in the Supershag Pole Fitness Championships in Boston this September. This gives me about 3 months to prepare... I need a song!

This pressure should be good for me, now I HAVE to workout every day. I need the push, the end goal. Otherwise it's hard to motivate myself. Soooo nervous/excited! Does anyone have any advice to give a first time competitor?

No new news on Escape yet. The studio space we wanted to use is out now because of the inspection issues. No handicapped access, yada yada, yada. Looking for new spaces now, trying to keep the rent low so we can offer great prices to our members. Not a task easily accomplished. Hopefully we will find a great location this month. It's do or die time!

I haven't been blogging much the last few months. Work is getting busy as is home life with baseball games 3 times a week plus practices, homework, playing outside, planning a business and trying to get caught up on Dexter before the new season! More coming soon, I promise! And I will be back on the blog hop, I swear! I miss it!!!

Monday, April 29, 2013

OUCH

So sore today! I don't get muscle pain like normal people, the day after a good work out. I get it the next day and I am HURTING today. But it feels good to be hurting for good reasons again. ;)

Long stretch session in my very near future. It's going to be an evening of playing outside with the kids enjoying the beautiful weather then a pole session after dinner. Beautiful night.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Studio Update

Starting this business has been an emotional roller coaster. We were flying along with our heads in the clouds and then, Bam! A road block sends us to a screeching halt. A road block in the form of wheelchair access. The building has no elevator. We didn't do any work at all on the studio this past weekend. It was depressing. I hate to put any more work in to find out that we can't open there. We have someone who works on business retention for the city dealing with the zoning commissioner (His name is NOT commissioner Gordon, and he has NO sense of humor) hopefully we will hear some good news today.


The weekend before, however, we worked our butts off. Dusting the beams, sweeping, painting, dancing, eating. We had a bunch of great helpers up there working and playing. If the zoning thing works out the studio is going to be gorgeous. We had a great day and are thankful to everyone who came out to help. 

Friday, March 15, 2013

All About Accessories!!! What's in my pole bag...

Wow, it's the middle of March all ready! Time is seriously flying by! Spring is just around the corner, it's light out later now, the snow is melting and things are already blooming in my life. This season is going to be so full of excitement.

The blog hop topic this month is pole goodies that we love. To me exercise is half about working out, half about having fun accessories. Here's what's in my pole bag:


~ Dry Hands. This is my favorite grip aid.
~ A pair of  Mighty Grip gloves, after an hour of poling grip aids no longer work for me.
~ Mighty Grip ankle and shin guards for doing lots of climbing

~ Extra long leg warmers. My favorite warm up accessory. They sell some great ones at www.sockdreams.com.Warm and comfy.
~ Heel to Toe Peppermint Sloughing foot lotion. Believe it or not, you put this stuff on your skin and then apply Dry Hands or your favorite grip aid and it lasts A LOT longer! I got this little tip during Xpert training.
 ~ knee pads for stretching and floor work
~ A good pair of pole shorts. My favorite right now are a pair of red "keep calm and pole dance" booty shorts from PoleiticalClothing )
~ SOCKS! I LOVE SOCKS
~ Arnica cream is what Heaven is made of.



~ Aveeno. I have really dry, sensitive skin. I get eczema all year long. I can't go without moisturizer. I don't know what it is about Aveeno, but I can use it to moisturize and still stick to the pole right after. Brilliant!
~Music. Since all my music is on my iphone, I never leave home without it.
~ A roll of medical tape (or duck tape / masking tape) for when the feet start to get bruised. This also helps prevent wrist burn.
~ ice packs (ok, this actually isn't in my pole bag. But it should be) Just in cases.
~ pen and notebook to record inspirations
~ My camera to take pics and videos
~ Ball of feet socks. These are great if you're doing a lot of spins.
~ Body spray / deodorant
~ Pocket for jewelry. Jewelry and pole don't mix.
~ protein shake with spring shaker - for mixing on the go
~ water bottle
~ Hair elastics & bobby pins
~ ballet slippers
~ My awesome hand exerciser from Everything Pole Dancing, one of my favorite places to spend lots of time online!
~ My new pair of teasers platforms (love!!)
~ Comfy sports bra.
Not in my bag but good stuff!!
My favorite pole to use is the chrome Xpole 45 mil. 50 is a little too big for my dainty little hands.
~ Allan key - to get spinny!
~ Hula hoop  - because they're awesome!
~ yoga mat
~ Crash mat
 ~ Rocking Legs and Abs with Cleo the Hurricane!
 Going through Mommy's pole bag

These are some of my favorite things. What's in your pole bag?

This is a Blog hop. Click below to read other fun blogs on this topic. :)



Saturday, March 9, 2013

Studio!!!

Looks like the studio space is going to work out!!! We were there today taking measurements and it looks like we'll have about 1900 usable sqaure feet. So much can be done with that space! Sooooo excited!!



Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Another night dedicated to trying to get the little one to sleep. At least I'm working from home tomorrow. Hoping to use my lunch break to check out the new gym up the street. I need to cross train more regularly. I wish classes were cheaper. :/

Monday, February 25, 2013

Terrible twos

My 2 year old refuses to sleep. Sooooo sleepy. Working full time, raising two kids and trying to get a business going is not easy. Who woulda thought?!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Slow cooking Sunday

Got bitten by the Italian cooking bug today. Made a slow cooked sauce with meatballs and sausage with eggplant parm, pasta for the fam and spaghetti squash for me. (All paleo but the noodles!). My sisters didn't brave the snow storm to come out for a lesson so that gets put off. Tomorrow (assuming schools not cancelled) I start going to the gym up the street. Hoping to get in there and sell them on pole classes. :)

For tonight though its wine and Walking Dead.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Dreaded dinner

Made a paleo shepherds pie tonight. I thought it was pretty good, my husband ate the whole thing. T ate the meat but picked out all the veggies. AJ pointed at it and said "icky". They will learn to love it. Muahhahahahaaa.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

February Pole Dance Blog Hop ~ LOVE

February Pole Dance Blog Hop  ~ Love

This months Blog Hop topic is love. Seduction. Sexuality. Sensuality. Romance. Passion.

"Passion, it lies in all of us, sleeping… waiting… and though unwanted… unbidden… it will stir… open its jaws and howl. It speaks to us… guides us… passion rules us all, and we obey. What other choice do we have? Passion is the source of our finest moments. The joy of love… the clarity of hatred… and the ecstasy of grief. It hurts sometimes more than we can bear. If we could live without passion maybe we’d know some kind of peace… but we would be hollow… Empty rooms shuttered and dank. Without passion we’d be truly dead.” 
– Joss Whedon,
I believe in living a life of passion in all its forms. When I'm old and gray I want to be able to answer "Where did the time go?" with: "My time was spent wholeheartedly enjoying the people that I love. My family and friends have brought me more joy than I could have believed possible. The career that I chose felt like play yet kept me challenged and motivated. I feel like I made a real difference in the life of those around me."

To be passionate is to share passion with those around you. When one has passion for life or relationships, hobbies or jobs you can also see it and feel it. Their energy is alive, contagious. Their glow encompasses you. Having passion is a way of living every moment of your life to its full potential.

How does this relate to pole? Pole has become my passion. It's about the dance, the grace, the movement, the strength I feel in my arms when I lift my feet from the floor. The feeling of letting go of the outside world and letting the Siren I keep hidden inside out to play.



It's also about the community. Men and women that share the same passion. That help each other out, motivate and guide each other. Give applause and criticism. Help to make each other be the best they can be. Pole is not a team sport, it's very personal, yet that team support system is always there. In class or online, it's amazing how people you've never met, maybe thousands of miles away across oceans can become your allies, your friends, your soul sisters.

Best of all it's about my greatest passion in life, my family. Being able to practice pole makes me more vibrant, more shiny. This enchantment spills out onto my husband and my kids. It takes me away from them once in awhile so I can attend classes, but makes my time spent with them more coveted. I have my family, my job, and a hobby that keeps me healthy. I am complete.
What's your passion?

Happy Valentines Day!!! 

Click HERE to read other bloggers share their vision of love. (Do it! The one's I've read so far have been amazing!)

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Sorry, kids. This is happening. You'll thank me. Someday.

I started reading a new blog today (courtesy of my husband) that made me feel terrible about what I'm feeding my family. http://www.100daysofrealfood.com (this will be going on my blog roll)

I have been following the paleo diet myself for a few months now, and I make them paleo dinners. But i feel guilty taking away all the "kid food" that they actually enjoy. When I'm not cooking for the family its chef-boy-r-de, hot dogs and Mac n cheese. I think it's time to do a healthy overhaul in our house. I won't make them eat paleo with me, that would be too much for kids I think. But cutting out processed foods is long over due. Sorry kids, this is happening.



Monday, February 11, 2013

Yes, I am a certified pole instructor.

Last month I had the amazing opportunity to travel to New York for the 2 day intensive pole certification training program provided by X-Pole and Crunch fitness. The certification is accredited by AFAA and ACE and endorsed by the PFA. The whole experience was fantastic. I drove to New York (only got lost once!), stayed at the adorable Yotel a few blocks from Times Square and had some great noms while I was there.


I drove in Friday night because class started early on Saturday morning and I wasn't sure where I was going. It made things much more relaxing. Friday night I met my sister and her friends (also traveling in NY that weekend, totally random!) for dinner at Guy Fieri's place. Then it was back to my comfy little hotel room to get some sleep for the morning.



In the morning I enjoyed free coffee in the hotel lobby while having a slight panic attack. I called the Crunch fitness studio, just to be sure I was going to the right place, and the guy answering the phone had no idea about a pole class going on there today. Ummmm, yes, panic.

A few more phone calls and a little help from my amazing husband back home and I was able to find out where I was going. The class was on the East side, not the West side. There are quite a few Crunch fitness studios in NY, probably should have research that small detail a little better.



The class itself started at 8AM, we started with brief introductions. All the girls were coming from different places and were in different stages of pole dancing. Some wanted the certification just to teach themselves. Others were instructors, a couple studio owners and students. The trainer, Alison, was very nice and knowledgeable. We received manuals which listed out everything we were going to learn and then got started.

We began with the "classroom stuff", the names for different grips, the CPR and first aid, the anatomy and physiology. A lot to remember with only one night to study (yes, there is a test). After that we learned how to create a beneficial warm up routine to get the blood flowing and the muscles warmed up. Then onto pole work. We learned body waves, peekaboos, pirouettes, climbs and spins. We learned how to make each move easier or more difficult and how to spot someone in each move. There was an hour break for lunch and then back to work.

That night after class I wanted to go out and see the city but instead I went straight back to the hotel, had a quick dinner and a couple drinks with one of my pole girls and then retired to my lil room. This is when I missed having a tub to soak in, OMG so sore!!! I was bruised from head to toe. And exhausted! The class took so much. And I was nervous about the test... what if after all this I didn't pass?!

I spent some time studying for my practical exam, which was teaching a two handed pirouette (something I had never even heard of before class that day). Then just crashed. The next morning was more calm, I knew where I was going and how long it would take to get there. I took a couple Ibuprofen and sat and had coffee and breakfast in the lobby while reading over my notes. Then picked up a cab and headed out for day 2.

The second day started with a one hour "master class" designed to show us how a beginner/intermediate pole class should flow. I must admit, getting on the pole that second day was tough, being already all bruised up and I kind of wish they did the harder moves on the first day, but it is what it is. We got through the whole class, put together a little routine with the moves we had learned and then did a cool down. Then on to the rest of the moves in the book. We did some floor work, handstands, move spins and climbs and of course, inversions.

By the end of day 2 I had one black and blue down the entire inside of my thigh, both feet taped up and bruises all over both arms and legs. We must have been a site. Once we completed every move in the book (and I did it! I managed to pull off every move in the book! I was soooooooooo proud!) the testing began. Each of us got up in front of the class and taught an assigned move. I was so nervous, but the friendly faces around me helped me through it. Then it was on to the written exam. It was much more intense than I had anticipated. The questions were written in a weird way, some of them were really tricky. There were a lot of anatomy questions, some I wasn't quite sure of. Not an easy test. Then the waiting came.....

Waiting is agony! Sitting their biting my nails as each girl got called up one by one to get her score. By the time she called my name part of me just wanted to run out the door. Her first words were "you passed" and then I let out the biggest sigh of relief ever. She told me I needed to amplify my voice more when teaching and showed me the correct answers to the 3 questions I got wrong (trick questions, me thinks!) then I got my certification and a tank top and I just wanted to scream with joy through the streets of New York (but I did not want to get arrested so I didn't)

Even though I felt like I had just been rolled over by a Mac truck I decided that I was happy and proud and I was going to take myself out to dinner in Times Square to celebrate. How often does one get certified to teach pole?! So I walked around Times Square for awhile (I had never been to NY City before! Can you believe that?! I live in MA and had never been!) it was a lot to take in. I ended up stumbling upon a bar / haunted house  my sister had recommended called Times Scare. I sat at the bar and chatted with the bar tender for awhile when he asked what had brought me there. So I pulled out my certification and said "I just finished a certification class to become a pole instructor!" The two girls who were sitting next to me and were the only other people at the bar turned to me and said "OMG, we work at NY Dolls!" (a top of the line strip club in NY, I gather). One was a dancer and the other a massage girl. Then the bar tender gets all excited and breaks out his cell phone. When he hands it over it's full of pictures of him.... in full drag. I love NY. I had fun chatting it up with that fun-loving crew and began to make my way home.



It was a fantastic experience. I would recommend it to anyone who is teaching or wants to teach. There is so much useful information given in that course. The spotting techniques themselves are priceless. Plus being able to say "I'm a certified pole instructor" is kind of cool, yes?

If you are looking to get certified, here is a list of programs that are PFA approved:


Fawnia Mondey-Detrich
Pole Fitness Studio
PFIC Certification
Las Vegas, Nevada

Lizz Schofield
Studio Soiree
PFIC Certification
Salt Lake City, Utah

OC Pole Fitness Certification/Felix Cane
PFICP Felix Cane Inc. Certification
Aliso Viejo, California

Aryn Savaard
The Goddess Movement
The Goddess Movement Method Pole Fitness Certification
Abbotsford, BC Canada

Mariana Baum
Pole Dance Paris
Professional Formation of Pole Dance Teacher
Paris

Angel
Discover Dance
Traveling Program

Rebekah Hennes
PoleMoves
PoleMoves Beginner/Intermediate Certification

X-Pert
X-Pert Pole Fitness Program
Traveling Program

Mary Ellyn Weissman
Empowerment Through Exotic Dance, Ltd.
ETEDance Beginner through Advanced Pole Dance Instructor Certification
Chicago Heights, Illinois
http://poledancercertification.com/

It is a lot of money, but worth the investment! Remember to do your research before signing up to take any certification classes.

Happy poling!



Thursday, January 17, 2013

Manhattan and Banana bread



I've been doing pretty well on the Paleo diet for the last week and it seems to be getting easier. At dinner last night we ordered pizza (which is my main trigger food) and I didn't touch it. I had a salad with grilled chicken.There's been a little bit of wheat sneaking in to some of the sauces and things I've been cooking with. but it's almost all out of the house now. Today I stocked up on Almond flour today for Baking and some other things that have become my new staples. I found this great recipie for banana bread which I made yesterday. It is REALLY good. I don't miss the flour at all. Next time I would use a bit less almond extract, but still good.



I'm making Brazilian chicken curry from one of my favorite blogs, PaleOMG in the crockpot for dinner tonight as I LOVE TO CROCK, not sure how it's going to be but it smells damn fantastic. Next week I plan to try this recipe for sandwich bread. I miss sandwiches. A lot.

Not sure if the new diet is helping with the eczema yet. It is better but it tends to ebb and flow... I'll need a little more time to know for sure. I had decided to allow myself dairy, I love, love, love cheese. But this morning I watched the documentary:  Perfect Human Diet and now I'm thinking of cutting dairy out as well. There's really no need for it. I would recommend watching the documentary if you're new to this diet and want to understand the science behind it. There wasn't much mentioned I didn't already know from my own research, so if you've been eating this way for awhile it would just be a waste of time.

Diet aside, I've been getting more and more inspired to get out of the cube. Time for big changes. Getting lots of ideas from the other fabulous pole schools and business owners, looking forward to putting them all together. Human beings just weren't built to sit at a computer 8 hours a day. Soooo unhealthy. (If you are also stuck at a desk all day here is great video on desk stretches from the Amazing Samantha Star:



Heading to New York tomorrow for X-pole teacher training (squeeeeeeeee), this is a major step in my journey, I'm so excited. I don't know what will follow, but I can't wait to find out. In the words of the great philosopher Tom Petty, "The future is wide open."

Can't wait to post from training this weekend! If you are paleo eating please share your favorite recipes with me! I love trying new things. Have a safe and happy long weekend!!




Thursday, January 3, 2013

* Guest Pole~Cat in the Spotlight *

A Guest Post From My Sister Katie (The Other Bambino)

I must start off by saying that I am in no way athletic.  Have you ever heard of someone having to take summer school for gym?  I have.  Don’t get me wrong.  I enjoy swimming in the summer and hiking in the fall, but when someone says the “E” word my brain flashes images of running on a treadmill or pumping an elliptical while watching the gym’s flat screen play latest paternity test episode of Maury.  Basically, you’ve lost me.  I’ll be in my room reading, thank you very much.  So, when my older sister insisted I accompany her to D.L. Fitness, a pole dancing and fitness studio, I was hesitant.   I had made my judgments and assumed everyone would judge me.  I pictured statuesque 18 year-olds who had either been dancing their whole lives or at least looked like it.  I trusted my sister though and agreed to meet her there one summer evening several months ago.
            My first class was with Maggie, a spritely little redhead who worked a hula hoop like it was glittery, dazzling bodily appendage.  She stood at the front of the studio, telling us what we would be learning in the class with that hoop circling her waist so fluidly you barely saw movement.  I was amazed. I was also nervous.  This was not the hula hooping I remembered from my childhood.  Maggie was supportive and we moved slowly.  I was shocked to find out my muscles seemed to remember the movements.  By the end of the first class I was panting a bit and my abs ached from not only the hoop movements, but from laughing.  I felt uplifted and eager for more.
            We learned new tricks every week and I practiced in my little apartment, knocking things off the coffee table and nearly taking down a pendant lamp with my “vortex”.  While practicing one evening after work my boyfriend looked over at me from the kitchen.  “It looks like your hips aren’t even moving”, he said sipping juice from the carton.  I stopped and felt a giant grin spread across my face.  This was my first taste of victory and I needed more.    
            I took my first pole class one month before the studio moved to their larger venue.  Jess, my lovely and skilled instructor with the patience of a saint taught me the basics. Pole I was not easy.  I was absurdly intimidated by this shiny, cold thing sticking out from the floor.  That first class was rough.  I banged my knee, my shin, and my elbow.  I had welts all over my arm and ankles.  Despite my new bruises and blisters, I was falling hard (no pun intended) for pole.  By the end of four weeks I felt stronger.  I was still a bit intimidated when it was time to try something new, but I did it.  I tried.  Once in a while I even succeeded.  When I did succeed, I celebrated and then pushed harder.
            I was thrilled when the new studio opened.  Maggie would be teaching aerial silks.  I spent my childhood dreaming of soaring through the air and awing audiences.  Here was my chance!  Right in front of me!  The first step!  So why couldn’t I lift myself off the ground?  That first class was even more cringe-worthy than my first pole class.  But I kept trying and pushing (or pulling as aerials would have it).  By week four I could climb, key, and complete my balance sequence.  By week 6 I completed a shaky and rather ungraceful “candy cane”.  
            My fitness goals change after every class.  My initial overall goal when I enrolled in classes was to get stronger physically and have fun doing it.  I am working on the stronger part and I enjoy every moment.  Each time I enter that studio I say to myself, “Nail this one move tonight.  Make this trick look more graceful.  Hold this pose longer than you did last week.”  I am shocked to say that I usually achieve my weekly goal in some form or another.  I am even more surprised to find that the strength I find in class carried over when I went home.  Since I started taking classes I left a job I didn’t like for one I liked better.  I took up baking again after I somehow lost the time to do it before.  I could look at myself at the end of class and know that no matter what I pulled off in that hour at least I tried.  The following week, when I walked in that studio again, I will try harder.  

xoxox,
The Other Bambino