dare to be different

A Day in My Shoes

Flashback to girls night, one of those guessing games…

“Has more than 12 pairs of shoes.” My friends had to go around the circle, guessing yes or no to this fact about me about me. And on this one, most guessed no. I was shocked. Really, people who see me often don’t think I have more than 12 pairs of shoes?

Upon reflection, I’ll admit…I am pretty basic in the shoe department. I’ve never been a shoe fanatic…maybe that’s a byproduct of my size 11 feet. Most of my life my shoe size limited my selections, and I guess I didn’t love drawing attention to my big feet anyway.

The shoes I remember most from my youth were my black patent leather Doc Maartens with steel toes from a very long moody emo phase. And I loved Birkenstocks even as a teen (so don’t call me trendy on that…they’re pretty much the only shoes that support me!) But even then it was simple Arizonas or basic clogs. Keep it low key.

Up until a few years ago, I stuck to mostly brown and black. A pair of each and you can match anything. Even today, I don’t buy new CrossFit shoes every time one comes out. I have three pairs so I might get a new one once a year (and the snazziest one was a gift.) But between sandals and clogs I have at least 12 pairs of Birkenstocks. Maybe my affluence is showing.

This got me thinking about recent changes in my life. My shoe wardrobe has expanded along with my roles and ambitions. This came to me most clearly on a recent Saturday…Here’s a glimpse into a day-in-the-shoe-life of Chick 2.

Morning: Brutal CrossFit class. Wearing: Snazzy Nike CrossFit shoes. Keeping me moving through burpees, jumps, and everything else.

Midday: Planting bulbs. Wearing: Cute Sunflower boots. Keeping me safe from critters and prickers in our burgeoning flower field.

Late afternoon: Short hike on the Appalachian Trail. Breaking in my new Rainbow Merrell Antoras. Keeping me stable over rocks, ice, and leftover snow.

All these colorful shoes are new to me in the past year (and not a Birkenstock in sight!) Each has its purpose and its role in my life. They help me get jobs done with a smidgen of style or at least a bit of a smile. I’ll never be a shoe guru, but a bit of color beyond the neutrals can add variety and spice to life.

author moments

New Year New Fun

As the new year is upon us, I like to review. For me I took a random look at my blog content for 2020. I reached out and pulled up 3 random postings. Now I will reflect on my review of this in a snapshot since so much change was upon the world in 2020.

Daydreaming 8/26/20

Ah the day dream post. I admire Sara Blakely from afar. If I happen to be on LinkedIn I may catch a daily dose of her sass and awesomeness. I may catch a photo of the vibe in her office from the acquaintance I know who works there. It’s a great glimpse into the dynamic work / life balance of a positive woman in business. Not to mention she has amazing coffee cup poses. Details matter. Not only is she thriving during the pandemic she is still inspiring through her Red Backpack Grant program. Amazing work!

This reflection reminds me to always dream. Always be looking to what’s possible on the horizon. How to be fresh when all else seems ordinary.

This year I drifted to daydream about growth. It’s a widely casted net but it has thus far provided amazing opportunities. Just dream it. Just keep dreaming!

Gift of Words 12/23/20

I read this post and reread it several times. A different view or vantage point as this task pulled random posts.

My two cents is what an amazing post. Just what many needed to read about. However, I thought about words in written form vs. words spoken. How much are people missing that spoken connection?

I used to think we needed to have the verbal interaction however since the world has been digital I see how some deal without those words everyday. Those who are deaf can’t hear the word but they rely on sign language and reading lips. If they already weren’t dealt a raw hand with being deaf, now they have to deal with masks. That may take communication away for those people. Or does it?

We have text. Generally speaking before the pandemic I thought texting was lazy. A way to hide and not face people in person. I never considered the shy person or the person with anxiety who struggles in speaking publicly. Texting is a communication outlet. It’s an option for those who can’t read lips now. 

What about the slow thinkers? They can craft their words in written form until they see perfection vs. having diarrhea of the mouth. These things never carried much weight for me before the pandemic. I thought about you can’t hear emotion. You can’t hear tone. Too much room for misinterpretation. How I missed the big picture.

The gift of words can be spoken, written by hand, texted and any other form some may use of other digital form such as photos, Bitmoji, or icons. Just another slant on the gift of words as I reflect.

One can be capable of reading emotion, intention, pain if they listen to the words in a text vs. focus on the written word in isolation. 

Oops I Did It 9/19/20

Well this is such a funny recap today of all days. It’s about my shoe fetish and my special edition Nike metcons I bought this year. 

I love them to this day. One of my favorite shoe purchases to date. They always get a second look. Some think I have on two different shoes. Nope, but I have done that before. Others think they are custom. Nope. They are a mashups of the year’s hits.

Complex, colorful and just badass. Not made for the basic person. Made for those bold enough to strut around in them. I just love them.

But the real irony is earlier today I was on the nike.com website designing a new pair of custom shoes. I wanted a new pair to launch the new year and nothing on the shelf jumped out at me. That meant I needed to design a bold pair. I have an upcoming competition and definitely need some new shoes to celebrate my competition.

There they are. Check out the colors and the bold design. Dr. Seuss said why fit in when you were born to stand out? I’m choosing to ring in the new year with some flair on my feet. I probably need them to run, jump, bounce and leap around all the obstacles. They will still be lurking as I try to launch an amazing year.

This little reflection exercise was fun and spontaneous. I think I’ll make it an annual project. I hope you can find something fun in your life to do like I just did. 

dare to be different, fitness and nutrition

Ooops I did it…

Oops I did it again. I bought another pair of shoes. Nike Metcons had me again with their new release!

If you recall I wrote a post about if I were a shoe recently. Seriously if I was a shoe I would have flair. And guess what Nike unveiled a new Metcon shoe with flair.

I didn’t have to design my own. I just had to buy this pair. The shoe literally had me at hello. I’m sure you are chuckling reading this.

But on a serious note the back of the shoe has a ? and an ! in two tone color. That in itself was a selling point for me. Which version of me are you getting today? The crazy excited version or the sleepy space cadet? Those behind me in my CrossFit class could get either on any given day thus I felt the back of shoes clearly stated my position on the daily. They will now get my disclaimer: Either or!

Well then we should just move into the coloring. The bright bold colors. The one side patterned the other not. The color variations of neon to bold. The different shoe lace colors to represent unique qualities. The tongues are even different. So much about these shoes remind me of my diverse life.

Ah, the shoes have flair. I have flair. A marriage of sorts. These shoes are on the way to me. These shoes picked me. I will be wearing them proudly as soon as I get them out of the box.

My shoes make me so happy. They make my feet smile. No blisters. No bad rubbing. Just cushions and colors to help me get the job done. Thank you Nike designers for making my week. For knowing there are people out in this world who need shoes like these.

Thank you life for allowing me the option to buy new shoes. They get used trust me. Just as much as my leggings, tank tops, socks and shorts. I work out more than many and I don’t waste a lot of money on other frills thus my addiction of shoes is justified to me.

Look for workout pics of shoes in the near future. FedEx says my box will be here today. I’m waiting as patiently as I can be at the moment.

Big sigh. A let down sigh. FedEx decided they won’t deliver until tomorrow: I guess the driver wanted to call it a day. So much for paying for priority shipment. 
Delayed gratification. Thanks FedEx.

#shoeaddict#nike #nikemetcon6 #girlswithflair #shoeschoseme

dare to be different

If I Was a Shoe

I just bought the best pair of shoes. They are a hodge-podge mix-match-type shoe which is just perfect for me.

If I were a shoe, I wouldn’t be one dimensional. I would have personality and flair. These shoes sport a little camo for my country girl vibe. A blank canvas to show my creative side. A little cheetah print because it’s badass. Then top it off with some snakeskin for overall style points.

They are definitely functional. They blend with many outfits. They slip on which makes them quick and easy for a busy morning. The Blowfish brand got this design right in my mind. Of course my validation is in my description above, but they are a very comfy shoe as well. The picture below shows them paired with some basic pants for a casual day out. Just slip on and go.

If I were giving rating stars it would be 5 stars for appearance. 5 more for comfort. 3 for price. 5 for versatility. For clarity, I’m referring to a 1-5 scale with 5 being the highest. I don’t get paid to endorse this shoe or brand. I am just a fan of them overall and have been for years. In the past I stuck with the no-lace tennis shoe slip-ons but ventured into some zippered camo high tops when those came out. All good shoes in my mind and why I decide dto write about them.

Take a peek at their new fall line. I saw some cute mashups that even included buffalo plaids. Hope you get a pair to check them out. I’ll be hopping around in mine all fall.

https://blowfishshoes.com/styles/?style=sneakers

After writing this I had a conversation with a friend and she said of course this is a brilliant metaphor. Of course the fastest girl in town needs versatile shoes since she’s always on the move. I laughed at this commentary. Of course there’s no time for blisters with all the pivoting and shifting her life demands so don’t bother rubbing her the wrong way. Again I’m inserting a chuckle because this was a live interaction. And of course they’re eye catching and everyone will be talking about them just like her. Big sigh here. I guess this ties into the eyes on you post.

How my shoes became a conversation starter today. Again it’s all about the shoe. My shoe says flair. Let me tell you about my shoe. If I was a shoe, I’d be a damn good story. If I was just a shoe.

After I wrote this post I sort of ordered a new pair of CrossFit shoes. A flashy pair to add to my collection. See below to see if you can spot the new pair? I may have left a clue or two for you.

fitness and nutrition, hustle

Getting My Butt in Gear

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Just a few more days until half marathon time. It’s all about fine tuning and staying as injury-free as possible.

As I make my packing list, here are the most important things I’ll be sporting.

My new AirPods with my “run run run” playlist is probably my most important accessory. A birthday splurge.  I am all about the tunes while I’m running to keep me motivated (and distracted)…I’m lost without music.   I’ve been adding and scrubbing songs for months now.  From Earth, Wind, and Fire to Miranda Lambert, Elton John to Maren Morris, Madonna to Stevie Wonder and everything in between…I think I have about 7 hours of music on my playlist.  Hopefully I’m a little quicker than that!

Paired with my Apple Watch, another birthday gift that I’ve quickly grown fond of.  I love how it connects me to other members of my running group and keeps track of my mileage and pace.  I’m still figuring out all that it can do, but I’m enjoying it so far.

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I’ll admit, I’m building my outfit around the shorts.  I have tried several different brands, but I’m going with one of my pairs of Constantly Varied Gear shorts.  I am a 5″ inseam girl.  I love the comfort of them and don’t forget another key element – POCKETS!

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But which pair to wear?  I thought I would wear my colorful unicorns or mermaids, with my Sunday Runday tank top from Miles and Pace.  But, then I feel pretty unstoppable in my Thunderstruck pair with my Strong Like Bull tank.  No matter which pair, it will be CVG shorts, a tank top, and a coordinating V Sport Bra.  (In a recent update, my thighs  started leaning out in the last month, so it will be a size down plain black pair of CVGs!)

Finally, I have a little belt that I bought years ago from amazon to carry along the essentials – ID, gels, pain reliever.  It has been with me since my very first Peachtree Road Race 4 years ago. Wouldn’t feel like a long race without it.

What a difference from that day four years ago, July 2015. I’ve covered many miles since then.  I’ve shed many pounds and even some bad habits along the way.  I’ve picked up some new ways of thinking (and ok, a few wrinkles).  One thing is sure…it is a long haul, and one I still work at every day.    I don’t really believe in “before and after” shots, but there are definitely differences along the path that are worth reflecting on.

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I have made many changes between now and then.  But I still feel the excitement in this picture…this is a girl getting ready to take on the Peachtree Road Race 10K for the first time!  She is nervous, excited, and joyful all at once.

Here I am again in October 2019, facing something new with a tangle of criss-crossed feelings. The day is nearly here! So exciting! Can’t wait for this time with my running group, finally reaching the start line, when we can make our goals happen.  Pictures, giggles, and fun to follow.  And then, what will the next goal be?