time.

Time is a funny thing really: a finite resource, like gold.
We never have enough and therefore always want more.
supply + demand.

But its not about how much we have, rather how we spend it.
Are you always busy working? Or always busy living.
Some would say I’m “always working.”
Me? I’m busy living. I do what I love + love what I do – work + play.

Your time is yours. YOU choose how to spend it, so choose wisely.

As a firm believer in “the best things in life make you sweat,.” I work hard + livyoung. Put in 100% to get 100%. I give time to myself, to others, and always find time to celebrate, often in the smallest of ways – a hug, a beer, a bought of voracious laughter. It doesn’t have to be so complicated. Yes, time is finite. But never “enough time” – becomes an easy excuse.
Its not about how much time you have, but rather how you spend it.

Design your time.

Start here:
How do you spend your time?
Who do you spend your time with?
Where do you spend time? (home, work, at a bar…)
Why do you spend your time how you do? (money, obligation, etc.)

Then try this:
How do you WANT to spend your time?
Who do you WANT to spend your time with?
Where do you WANT to spend your time?
Why do you WANT to spend your time re: above?

Take charge of your time.
Take charge of your life.
Small changes make big differences.

Does your work fuel you or deplete you? Maybe both.
Do the people who surround you inspire or exhaust you?
“Not enough time” becomes an excuse if you are not focusing your time properly.
Make time for what you want. Stop spending time doing what you don’t, because it “makes sense” or because “you should.” If you want to be in a relationship, make time to date.
If you are in a relationship, that takes work too. Make time for your relationship.
And the longest relationship you have, is with yourself. So make time for you.

I need sleep, sweat, fuel, work + celebration each day. Yes, daily. It is my commitment to me. And I don’t make excuses either way. I do what makes me happy. I work hard + LIVYOUNG.

Sometimes hard work out weights living young. And I wake up feeling lonely.
And some days living young overwhelms working hard and I wake up tired from staying out too late laughing and hungover from more than one beer + an over buttered burger.
But so it goes.
This is life.

We all seek balance between work + play everyday: BALANCE between how + with who. 
I suggest you start with you.
Your life, your story, your movie, your time.
Do what you love, love what you do, FOR YOU. 
Because once you show up for you, everything else starts to show up – work, life, love. So rather than filling up time with disconnected tasks and surface conversation, consider utilizing time in your favor. And always give time to others not out of obligation, but because it fuels you. We get what we give.

Your time.
Your life.
Your choice.
Work hard. LIVYOUNG.

biggest fan or harshest critic?

It is a human dilemma: finding a balance between ego + heart. 
So here is a question I’ll pose upon you:
Are you your biggest fan?
Or your harshest critic? 

Can we, as humans, find the balance in both?

What happens when you force yourself to feel?
For me, stillness is my biggest challenge, which is why yoga is so integral in my life.
Less fight, more flow.
Slowing down is tantamount in order to listen, to others,
but more importantly to ourselves, to our intuition.
Our wants.
Our hearts.

But endless to-do lists fill my brain, with a common thru line of huge dreams and limited time.  A shaman once told me I fixate on my short legs, because they don’t allow me to run fast enough. But I refuse to get stuck, so I keep moving forward.

Late nights working followed by beer at broome street bar turns into an early morning wakeup. As I fire away emails at 445am, I come out of my trance and remind myself that the city still sleeps + I can slow down. I force myself to shut my eyes if only for another hour.
My ego interrupts and urges me to run.
Because that is what humans do to distract from feeling.  We run.

Often in stillness I am my harshest critic. My ego makes me feel guilty for wanting to take a knee, if only for one hour, Friday at 5am. Ego whispers, ‘move faster. be better. do more,’ while heart hopes for some rest. Today, ego wins + within minutes I jet out the door to box + flow away any insecurity holding me back from moving forward.

We distract ourselves from feeling because it is often easier not to.
Feeling is facing our true selves, our intuition, our hearts not our ego.

On rare occasions, when I shut down my ego + allow love in, I become my biggest fan. If only for a moment, void of attachment, comparison + judgment, I give myself a pat on the back for my effort and dedication.

So: ego or heart? Back to the question I pose unto you,
Are you your biggest fan?
Or your harshest critic?
Ask yourself in stillness, in silence, in solitude,
Not after you landed that hot date, or got the great promotion.
Answer yourself honestly, from your heart – not your ego.
Are you your biggest fan or your harshest critic?
Can you find the balance in both?

i call it ninja chic

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I call it ninja chic.

I work out to get messy. messy is sexy. The “looking good” part is the cherry on top.

Ninja chic: clad in all black, without distraction or insecurity about my belly hanging over my 30$ American Apparel ripped leggings, or my boobs sticking out of my 8$ old navy tee shirt, layered atop my boys sports authority baseball tee.

Sexy is a feeling. I don’t need to “look sexy” to feel sexy. Ninjas are sexy: precise, technical, tactile + focused. I work out like a ninja. With a mission in mind, a clear head + open heart.

Rewind to my 15 year old self: less ninja + more layered long sleeves, sweating buckets in bikram yoga. Sweating thru my insecurities as they stared back at me in the mirror as I perfected my dancer pose, bending in every direction, judging myself skin deep. Thru self awareness and self love, I turned off the noise+ looked within.

While my outlook has changed, getting messy has not. I work out for me. I work out to feel. Push my limits. To fight + flow. To let go.  Success is the sweat dripping down my back, my heart pumping out of my chest, my breath still steady. You only look as good as you feel.  I feel ALIVE.

In my ninja chic, I operate with tenacity and in some ways a disguise. I show up with grit + grace, to be better than I was yesterday – not to compare or be compared, judge or be judged.  I slide into class unassuming, and move with precision + competitive edge.

Ninja chic works for me. Do what works for you.

 

facing new fears: all in.

Fundraising

I sell myself everyday. I show up, all in. Or I stay in bed.

If Im half cap(apacity) – im half cap. And for me, there is no power in that. So I sleep 8-10 hrs. I tap out at 2 beers. I eat mostly greens + lots of healthy fat + burgers with no buns. I love sugar but stick with just under 2$ at Dylan's Candy Bar.

And I live big. And bold. ALL IN.

So I started this fundraising thing. Selling myself, concept and brand. Full heart. Transition. Right now. From box + flow Bond Street --- To box + flow big time. But I have no road map. And no where to run + hide. I am just here. Giving my all. To grow what I love even more than myself.

Because it is so much bigger than just me.

But fundraising means money. and money is simply the hardest thing to ask for, the elephant in the room, more uncomfortable these days than asking for sex. If you want sex, just hop on tinder, swipe right, and go get it. Money? different story.

But im scared.

and it is a different scared than when I started. A different fear ive faced every day since I opened – or even before that when I decided to leave the comfort of a cushy job for a dream no one understood...and in the short term, ie now, the only thing I can do is face my fear in the best way I know how: wrap up my hands, slip on my gloves + head to 55 bond street, to box + flow, to #flowthruthefight.

#workhard #livyoung

ego vs. heart

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A dream is a dream until you make it reality. 14 months ago I shut off the noise, stopped looking for answers, partners, advice + permission.  And i followed my heart.

I have all my answers. So do you. everything you need is inside.

What do you see when you look in the mirror? Really. Be honest with yourself. What do you see? Stop doubting. Start doing. But from your heart. Not your ego. Your ego doubts. Your ego judges. Your ego is rooted in insecurity.

Ego OUT. Heart IN.

Ask yourself the tough questions. And answer them...from your heartyou may or may not understand box + flow. it isn't about how fast you can punch, how hard you can hit, or if you can touch your toes. It is about how deep you can breathe from the length of your spine to the depth of your core, about shedding the layers holding you back from being vulnerable, from being you. exactly as you are. No ego. Just heart.

so are you willing to understand yourself?

I lead with love but recognize my ego + now ask myself before making decisions: Ego or heart? example: are you upset he/she didn’t call you back because you really like him/her? or is your ego just bruised?

Ego is external – mirrors, flash, façade. Heart is pure. no mirrors. no flash. all real. heart + soul. gritty + gratifying. authentic. that is box + flow.

be authentic. be You.

And after the hard questions (the deep sweat, the fight), we flow. We celebrate. You need to shed the layers and ask yourself about your dreams + fears. Fight for what you want. Let go of what you don’t.

Life is too short to resist your dreams. Confident in your decisions – head high (ego), heart open + forever moving forward.

Listen to your heart.

only YOU have your answers.

Everything you need is inside.

celebrate, always.

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I used to say, ill celebrate when I have something to celebrate.

I was in such a dark place of unknown, (transitioning from quitting my job + afraid to start box + flow, for fear that everyone was watching + judging. but really I was just judging myself) that I couldn’t even find reason to have fun.

Oh boy has that changed.

Judgement or not, we’re 14 months in, thriving + I’m celebrating everyday. Forgiving for the bad and acknowledging the good – finding celebration if only in a bout of laughter or a really good beer. #livyoung

Am I where I want to be? No way. I’m just starting. And this is going to be an uphill battle for sure, but im not afraid. #workhard

We live in transition… it’s called life, which is why it is not always about the change, but how you handle it: the sweet + the sour. You choose to flow or to fight but anything dealt with resistance will resist. If you choose to #flowthruthefight – to find the ease in change, the transition can be smooth – it can be easy.

3 years ago I spent new years at Del Posto with a boyfriend I ferociously hated but sought his affection so hard I sold my soul for 11 months trying to win his. Del Posto was dark + I was wasted. We got in a battle, made all of our friends terribly uncomfortable, I fell down the stairs + we broke up the next day.

“The secret to having it all is knowing you already do.”

Bingo.

For me, the one thing missing is love. And in all of these transitions + learning to love myself, I know that finding love will be easy.

Heart open, head high, (+ fists up in seconds,) -- ready for anything.

2017, im grateful

2018, im ready.

We #flowthruthefight

 

self reflection sunday

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Lately I feel surrounded by anger. Not my own, but energy suckers that aim to pull others down. I wont succumb. A long time ago I walked away from negativity and opened up to love. My belief in the goodness of people came in tandem with the belief in myself. Newfound confidence filled me as I turned my back on insecurity, comparison + judgment. Time is precious + I have no time, space, energy or interest in negativity or surrounding myself with people who do.

In the closing weeks of 2017, I find myself reflecting on year one of business, and one year of my truly independent self, with no "job" to hide behind or boyfriend to define myself thru. I feel strong in my stature but light on my feet. I feel grounded but so ready to soar. I feel ease, which is ironic really, considering this week brought transitions in my team + discomfort poking at me from all angles.

One interaction in particular had me in a funk for 24 hours until a dance party at Tom + Jerry’s surrounded by taxidermy, big hugs, loud music + Bulleit bourbon brought me back to equilibrium. My integrity was questioned, my character was degraded + my spirit dismissed. In this brief encounter, venom permeated 55 Bond Street as hissing + dissing filled the space I’ve put so much love in, to build. I have spent the better part of 30.5 years building my reputation, leading with love + focusing on how I can contribute to the world, but reality is, I can’t win them all.

I am intense with a strong personality, strong opinions, + strong beliefs. As such, I evoke strong reactions quite quickly. People either love me or hate me, there is rarely middle ground+ I am ok with that.  I am me. I learn every day. I observe peoples actions + inactions. I learn thru my own experiences, by listening + viewing others. Someone once told me “there are no mistakes, just lessons.” I collect lessons.

As I sat + stared hate in the face, I internally repeated, “take the high road, take the high road, take the high road.” And it was challenging. However, I’ve realized that how people act + react, is most often a reflection of themselves + how they’re coping with their own insecurities.

But my newfound role as “boss”  has me feeling isolated in the sense that I know I cant trust as I have in the past, and be vulnerable as I want so badly to be. I have to protect myself, my business, my reputation + my heart. And simultaneously, still be me. This is especially hard because I wear my heart on my sleeve, I speak only when I have something to say, otherwise I say nothing.  I choose my words wisely, listen closely + remember everything. It is a give + take, a push and pull and something I am just learning.

And as the year comes to a close, I continue to aim to inspire, to open my heart, love to love + find true love outside of work, to continue to connect to my friends, family, team, teachers and students. Mostly, I hope to continue to connect to myself, to live my dreams in life, work + love as I keep growing into me, with gratitude, into 2018.

#foreveryoung parents

#foreveryoung parents

food, fitness, mentors + transitions.

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I met Joanne Wilson 8 years ago after moving to NYC for culinary school and before interning for @foodandwine magazine with the dream of being a food writer. She is the face behind blog Gotham Gal, a force to be reckoned with, mother of 3, and investor in over 90 companies. But her writing felt like home, honest, open, wise but humble – with a love for food, family + investing in women entrepreneurs. I admired her + as such, I let her know via email and followed up often with questions and comments especially regarding the NYC food scene I was diving into head first.

So, it was more than coincidence when I recognized Joanne from her blog picture sitting across the dining room at Joseph Leonard. Carpe diem. I went to say hello.

There was something about her honesty that was captivating. She is straight to the point, no BS, with an edge that can often come off biting + quite harsh…exactly what I needed, to be honest. After introducing myself in person, I followed up via email + naturally asked her to set me up with the guy she was dining with (always proactive).

Many emails and sporadic meet ups ensued. Over the course of just under eight years, Joanne became my sounding board during times of transition, work + love. She helped re-negotiate my salary when I was particularly undervalued and led with, “no one is just going to give you more money, even if you are the best of the bunch, you have to ASK.” So I did, and was rewarded, with a raise + the ability to form my own consultancy side hustle to compliment my day job. 

Joanne + her husband Fred vetted many of my ex boyfriends at events or charity fundraisers and provided gentle feedback when it came to love.

The toughest love came when I started questioning my box + flow journey. At the time her feedback felt harsh + unrelenting, but in hindsight, it was exactly what I needed. “You want to own a gym? No Joanne, its not a gym. It’s a brand, a concept, a feeling. Olivia, that doesn’t just happen overnight. To start, it’s a gym. Other peoples’ sweat – employees, customers, issues…”Why would you leave the food world with all of the foundation + network you built?

Well – I did. And here we are. I’m so grateful for Joanne’s tough love, hard questions + ultimate belief in me. And for my courage to finally embrace life transitions, smoothly + #flowthruthefight.

It is such an honor to be featured on Joanne's podcast, link below:

http://gothamgal.com/2017/12/what-drives-me-olivia-young-box-flow-podcast-46/

 

 

everything is energy.

smiling at a burger, naturally.

smiling at a burger, naturally.

When you open up to positivity - it opens up right back. I haven’t been sleeping well lately, actually for the past year. My brain overcomes me and my body gives in. I get in bed as early as 7pm on nights that I can + toss and turn until the clock hits just before 5am, and I still leap out of bed, ready for new adventures. I used to pass out for 10 hours, wake up by 5 and ferociously tick off my to–do list with upwards of 30 emails sent well before sunrise. 5-7am are magic hours. These days, routine still the same, but with a bit less magic because my brain is a little slower and my body needs some TLC.

Lack of sleep leads to lack of productivity, or perhaps lack of presence. I went for a run last Saturday. I was running so fast, hands so frozen from the wind, with such pep in my step after a solid 9 hour sleep, that I wasn’t paying attention when I ripped a hard right, and my ankle didn’t come with me. Pain pushed me to the ground in shock. UBER picked me up. And I still made it to yoga…and then to teach.

I know, I know. I need to slow down. Everything is energy. The universe is sending me a big fat SLOW sign. But running makes me feel free. I put on my sneakers + go. No matter where I am in the world, no matter the time…it is freedom. I’ve been told many a times by Shamans, energy healers + psychics that I fixate on my short legs that prohibit me from running faster – physically, romantically + professionally. I want to build a brand, but first I have to lay the foundation. I want to get married, but first I have to date. I run everywhere I go, in heels or not.

But today, I can’t run...not even close. My twisted ankle is a true testament to my willpower. I’ve been hobbling around for over a week. Old Olivia would retreat, get sad + focus on the negative. But, everything is energy. If I retreat, the world retreats. If I’m closed off, I’ll be met with resistance. If I fight, universe fights back. There is no progress in that. My attitude has shifted. I choose flow...Spotify in my ears, a hobble in my step, I get where I need to go with a little shimmie, because I’m alive, and like I said last week, im just grateful for that.

Can you dance thru the fire? Can you flow thru the fight? Questions I ask myself, often. I choose Yes: glass half full, rose colored glasses, laughter instead of tears...fun in the now. With big dreams, endless vision + loosely written plans full knowing that plans change + life happens and how I handle transitions is where the magic comes in. No expectation, no anticipation, just a pep in my step, a song in my ears, a belly full of laughter + a heart full of love.

In closing, i have 3 questions: 1) when was the last time you laughed? 2) when was the last time you laughed at yourself? 3) can you find some fun in today--no matter what comes your way?

4 songs to help with your shimmie below:

https://open.spotify.com/track/756La6nWDta09ROtNohCil

https://open.spotify.com/track/5G6aQWH215hCxdhfCqI7XB

https://open.spotify.com/track/1FCQEg7wOK9IIBuxx63krr

https://open.spotify.com/track/1bhUWB0zJMIKr9yVPrkEuI

#workhard #livyoung

a dirty word

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Comparison is a dirty word. and i've definitely felt dirty on many occasions. But I cleaned up a while ago. And when I catch myself tip toeing into the mess, I shape up.

As a sole entrepreneur in a saturated industry, comparison can be justified. But I wont have it. Too much of my energy has been wasted on wondering why they have what i don't + vice versa. And as a single woman who dates like I work, too much of my energy has been wasted on worrying why he chose her over me. When in actuality, both of those scenarios are my own manifestations, neither are true and neither matter. You can spend hours comparing, years even...or you can spend that same time just.

doing.

you.

me? I stopped worrying about what others thought and made peace with my decisions, actions + dreams. i'm human. we're human. we compare + live in comparison.

what a waste: too much time spent worrying about what others were doing, as a result of not being satisfied with what I was doing. We all come into our paths at different times – some young, some old, and some never.

Find your own path.

Follow that.

There are no mirrors in box + flow for good reason: no distractions, no judgment, not of yourself, to yourself, or any one else. We keep focused on our fight, our flow, breathing in + letting go. No time to waste and no time wasted, especially not comparing. This weekend was an anomaly. One class in particular just couldn’t stay in their game. They were all too busy focusing on the person next to them going fast or slow, getting too into their heads + too insecure in their actions to even move forward.

I left feeling empty. It made me sad to watch people so concerned about what everyone else was doing, unable to just be for themselves. We spend so much time worrying about everyone else, the images we create, the perception vs. reality. 

It is time to get back to ourselves.

Stop comparing. It leads no where good. It is an empty endless road of always feeling not good enough or sometimes better than. Just focus on you. All you. For you. By you. Do you.

That is all WE need to worry about. The rest will follow.

#flowthruthefight #workhard #livyoung

looking back + moving forward

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Without fully recognizing my own story when I opened a year ago…I’m finally realizing the depths of what i created in box + flow: a safe place for women unafraid to get messy + men unashamed to flow, a place for people to be just as they are, without judgment, fear or shame. a place to fight for your dreams and let go of your fears, to uncover your limitless potential, to find your “flow.”

Box + flow is a place for me to be vulnerable and share my passions with the world…not just boxing + yoga but a platform to clear my anxiety, fight for my fire, my wants, my dreams, and let go of what doesn’t serve me – to strip away the layers that hold me back from getting where I want to be, to fight + to flow.  it is a place where I can celebrate my hard work with a beer after + grab a burger with those who sweat beside me. it is a place to find balance, to #workhard + #livyoung

Boxing gives me strength + yoga forces me to feel.

For so long I was ignoring my path, my intuition + myself thru busy distractions like dating + work. Whenever I was bored with my job, I fixated on men. I got caught up in bad relationships that left me feeling empty until I felt whole again. After bad dates or big breakups, no matter how debilitating, I picked myself up to run, box + flow. I can remember the anger pouring out of me as I hit the bag each morning at Work Train Fight, along with the tequila seeping thru my pores.I can picture the tears streaming down my face in each yoga class I cried thru one break up over the next on my mat.

Boxing allowed me to let go. Yoga forced me to feel what I felt without hate + anger. Box + flow brought me to balance my emotions and move on.

I want to build a business, (i am building a business) -- offering a feeling, a connection, a release, available to all. I get emails from students who can’t afford class but it's what they need. I get emails from parents whose children are transitioning into student life and the only release they’ve found is thru box + flow. Box + flow is for everyone: men + women, old + young.

I want to make this feeling accessible to all who need it: everyone who has a fight and those who don’t even know it lives within them. Box + flow is about finding your fire, your passion, your strength, your resilience, + then letting go – to allow flow in so things can create and evolve, because fire with fire, is just that. Its all red. Its counterproductive. We need FIRE + water. We need the sweetness after the struggle to allow our hard work to settle in, to recognize and acknowledge our efforts: how hard we work, but also to be very clear about what we’re working for. Some people don’t even know they have a fire, a passion. Box + flow allows you to discover that.

And if it is just about the workout (six pack abs + hundreds of calories), that's a great start. But consider digging deeper. Set an intention, commit to it for 55 minutes and watch those routine 600 calories burned edge up to 1000. You get what you give. With effort comes achievement.

So ask yourself this:

What is worth your fight?

What is NOT?

What can you LET GO of?

Start there. Start with that. I started there. And now one year in, i look back to how far I've come. Anything is possible. You just have to believe in YOUrself.

Big dreams. Big things. We #flow thru the fight

#workhard. #livyoung

 

80:20 fight:flow

i am 80% fight, 20% flow - which parallels the format of the box + flow method. my challenge is finding calm, slowing down, letting energy settle, and allowing things to evolve as they should without control, fight, or force.

starting a business (and having a baby), seems to require the same skill of l e t t i n g g o.  if you smother it, it will suffer. if you control it, it will be limited. if you do everything for it, it will become reliant rather than self sufficient. since opening the studio 11.5 months ago, i have done my best to practice what i preach, more flow, less fight...just let go.

I believe in energy: you get what you give. As such, i give my all in hopes of big things.  Every now and then i get a curve ball: something unexpected, indescribable, sometimes even unfathomable. These are tests to my resilience. If you’ve been to class you’ll notice the parallel messaging during the most challenging boxing rounds: 'can you hold strong even when things get messy? can you find ease even as you fight for what you want? and can you do it with grace? The magic is in the transitions – to find ease as you transition from fight to flow.

i will never give up the journey of finding softness even in the messiest of situations, finding my breath even when i feel most suffocated, finding my voice even when there are no words to be said. and i continue to push you to do the same: to follow your dreams regardless of the odds, to live for you, as you, no matter who tells you not to. to #flowthruthefight because YOU can.

i fought myself to start this business. many didn't understand why i'd leave my fruitful career in food to enter the saturated fitness world. i sought approval, opinion + ample judgement on this 'silly' idea, which led me to question myself + drag my feet before committing.  but once i was in, i was in. and with that i share my response to a client email. i always open myself up to feedback because i will not settle for where i am. I choose to be better, to move forward, because comfort + complacency are just not my thing. and with such openness, i knowingly expose myself to ample judgment along the way.

"ive been holding back from writing this but found it was bothering me more to not say anything. you reached out a while back about social media and finding my voice, because you saw my evolution in posting. i think i mentioned it was when i finally "let go" that things started to flow. i stopped worrying about being judged or caring what others thought.
i started to just fully embrace me, and with that comes judgment.
i wish i could explain how lonely it is to run a business, alone.
how hard it is to keep everyone happy - students, teachers, staff -- and then there is myself...and finding my own balance with my life outside of work, to keep myself happy thru the hardships + successes.

i try not to judge. i opened a space to give back what i've gotten from boxing + yoga for so many years - strength and softness. That is the silver lining of box + flow, the meaning behind it. but making decisions solo isn’t easy. what do i post on instagram? how do i keep it cool + sexy without seeming exclusive? how do i stay committed to the brand while opening up to new things, people + partnerships in the process, to make sure i can pay my bills at the end of the month?

It’s hard to own a business. It’s hard to be human nonetheless. Mostly, it’s hard to just be yourself because no matter what, someone will judge you. So I leave it at this: I have so much respect for you, your feedback, your feelings, your successes and your concerns...

But id also love to open up the idea that I’m just human too, trying to make a difference, trying to succeed in a world full of naysayers and criticism, in an over saturated industry, with so many odds working against me – (one being that I’m a female who started a boxing brand.) But I won't give up because that’s not who i am. And i only want to be ME, and along the way, i hope others see me for me - for my own strengths and weaknesses but acknowledge at the end of the day - we are all connected. we are all in this together. we all just want love + to be loved. but mostly to love ourselves first.

thank you for being a part of box +flow. for supporting a space that i think you believe in. and for seeing me for me. i hope you have a great week.

So back to the idea of 80/20: For me its about finding the grace thru the grit, in every situation.

We #flowthruthefight

#workhard #livyoung

 

 

the little engine that could

sunday.

No days off. No matter how tired I am. I keep fighting to get closer to what I want + let go of what I don't need because no one is going to do it for me. I fight w grace + with presence, with the Heart of a lover + the Soul of a fighter. 

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my fathers daughter, i'm as Stubborn an an ox + will never give up. I Fight w resilience and ease, with passion and presence, aiming to bring mindfulness to the fight thru box + flow.

And nothing can break me- except me. but I believe in myself too much for that. you should too. Let's Bring more mindfulness to the fight.

One punch at a time.

One breath at a time.

we flow thru the fight.

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So class has no breaks. Because there are no breaks in life. We keep moving, fighting, flowing, evolving + growing.  bc even when I feel sheer exhaustion, I push past my limits. because im determined to make a difference. to make a difference, you have to be different. 

like the little engine that could...i think i can i think i can i think i can.  last night, i could have stayed home, but i fight for balance too between work + play. red lipstick + lingerie make me feel sexy enough to flirt w a stranger with dark eyes and strong hands. bc I will be a wife + a mother and my fairy tale isn't going to write itself.

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So Sunday morning sweeps in + I wake up and go. One step into the next. One punch into another. Up dog into down dog. in my own practice for me + then for you.  Smooth transitions. Regardless of my hangover from too little sleep, too much tequila + dry aged bone in filet to break the fast for yom kippur. no excuses. i have a room full of people waiting for me to push them thru. even on this sunny sunday.

because Big dreams. Big things. and tonight ill be in bed by 7pm. #balance.

#Workhard. #Livyoung

from food to fitness.`

It is incredible how much things can change in just a moment, a day, 10 months...

in less than one year I've opened a profitable business, rekindled and ultimately let go of a boyfriend, moved apartments and continue to get to know myself. And now, on return from my first offsite wellness event, I reflect on the jump from food to fitness…

For eight years, I spoke all things food while helping scale a global restaurant company.  Those well spent years also meant work trips to food + wine festivals in south beach + aspen, with overwhelming excitement and everlasting hangovers. My last year at Altamarea Group and last Aspen Food + Wine was a sure sign that fitness had captured my heart and wellness was where I'd find solace. While revelers were up partying, I was running 9 miles thru the Rockies to my favorite yoga studio near the Aspen Airport. Yet my time spent in the food world was as good as it gets.

The instant gratification of huge burger events followed by late night partying and early morning pickle backs with celebrity chef elite was addicting, as instant gratification typically is. Besides, who would refuse hang time with the world's hottest chefs in private mansions in Aspen + Miami, complete with endless appetites for all things open bar + caviar?

Aspen, CO. black spandex. always.

Aspen, CO. black spandex. always.

meat is usually for dinner.

meat is usually for dinner.

Fakahany + Michael White.

Fakahany + Michael White.

 Its been a year + a half since I left foodie life and one day since returning from Mind Body Green Revitalize, my first wellness offsite -- a refreshing peak into a world I jumped into head first – via box + flow (with beer in the fridge and bunless burgers galore).  No need to scour the internet for party attire, instead I arrived with a suitcase full of black spandex, two pairs of heels I didn’t wear, and zero worries about late night gluttony via pigs in a blanket + momofuku cake balls.

it was a real treat.

200 top wellness experts flocked to the remote Ritz Carlton Dove Mountain  for 48 straight hours of connection via fitness, wellness + love. Instant gratification was found in the giveaway suite stocked with sustainable healing. This gluten-free-toxin-free-sugar-free candyland offered feel good fuel from the inside out: vital collagen proteins, moon dust, swell bottles, sakara life, bombas socks, healing crystals, hum vitamins, probiotics, and things I never imagined I’d care for. Needless to say, my initial reaction was where’s the beer? So I scooted towards the Krave Jerky stand to be sure i'd have snacks for safety. 

But once I found comfort in discomfort, I let go.

Its incredible how good feeling good can be! Exhausted from travel, I passed out at 6pm night one and woke up 10 hrs later. I strapped on my sneakers and ran thru the desert before taking on breathwork lessons and ear acupuncture. One full day of programming ensued, complete with panels + speakers on coping with cancer, microbiome, intermittent fasting, ketogenics, climate change, intuitive healing and more. 36 hours in and the only beer consumed was with a firefighter on the plane. 

I felt amazing.

My past career was thrilling. Every food festival was my quarterly excuse to party past midnight and find trouble after too much tequila. Regardless, I always woke up by 5am and worked out before bloody marys at noon. But today, my priorities have shifted. Im finding a high in vital proteins and chaga tea, in serums instead of sodium, and connection rather than competition. Instant gratification from late night partying is now sustainable gratification from feel good fuel from the inside out for the long term. At revitalize, group hikes start at 6am, limited booze isn’t served until happy hour and no one complains.

I would safely assume that I am not alone in this feeling. So many of my chef friends are waking up to work out, and finding their own balance in work, fitness + food. They’re choosing wellness over illness, and i'm on board. So, if this is the wellness world, then i think I'll stay awhile. Next year, I just might bring some beer + bubble gum. I'm looking forward to it.

#workhard #livyoung

South Beach Wine & Food Festival. 2009.

South Beach Wine & Food Festival. 2009.

Andrew Zimmern + Michael White

Andrew Zimmern + Michael White

boxing, burgers, backbends, beer. Vaucluse, NYC.

boxing, burgers, backbends, beer. Vaucluse, NYC.

Capon, Cardoz, Besh, Becker, White.

Capon, Cardoz, Besh, Becker, White.

to love, learn + let go.

The end of anything is usually sad. A good book. Summer. A thrilling conversation with a stranger on a short train ride. A relationship that no longer feels good. And while endings are sad, they also lead into the happiness of new beginnings.

I often ask myself (and you in @boxandflow class), if you can stay, stay in the stillness, stay thru tough times + fight thru the fire to the water. because in the end, the only way out is thru. But how long should you stay?  When do you leave discomfort? When do you end the inevitable?

To that, I have no answer. But id say it’s over when you know it no longer feels good. When there is hurt, or pain that doesn’t seem to get better. When the love is off balance, and one person is giving more + one person is just getting so much less. I’d say it’s over when it no longer feels easy, when there is more fight then fun.

I have been in enough relationships to have learned from mistakes, big + small. Most recently, tables on me were turned. In the past, I have always been the one giving, endlessly: gifts, affection, emotion, time, energy, love. To be with someone who reciprocates, is a gift. I was given the gift of someone’s love. Real love. After spending time in relationships where I always felt like I was the only one giving, I finally found someone who wanted to give to me in return. But it still didn't feel right.

I asked the universe for him. he appeared. but I wasn’t ready to open my heart. I’m so used to fighting for affection, it was like I didn’t know what to do when it was easy. But shouldn’t I like easy? Yes, I should. And one day I will. Maybe it will be some day soon.

Preaching balance is my work, and finding balance is my focus. But balance is tough when you’re starting a new business. And letting go is my biggest challenge. I couldn’t find the balance between love + work, work + play, strong + soft. Or I chose not to find the balance. And at some point “work” also becomes an excuse. We choose how we want to spend our time. Those choices are a reflection of what we want + what is important.

So, i was given a gift + then given a choice to open my heart. I tried. but we were dancing to different music and couldn’t find the same rhythm. For me it was all fight. The flow in our love was one sided for too long. He wanted in when I wanted out and vice versa. It got to a point where I was hurting him. And in this life, you get what you give. I can’t live with the guilt of hurting someone else. Especially someone who deserves the most love.

So with a heavy heart, we both move on.  I cherish our time spent together, even when it didn’t feel easy, when I wouldn't let it. I wouldn’t come undone. I wouldn’t open my heart + get messy. I wouldn’t let him in. because I’m guarded? Maybe. 

I hope one day I will find that power. The power to let someone in. To love + be loved. Because I believe in love. Real love. And I know I will find it. If I let it find me. No mistakes, just lessons. I'm learning to let go. day by day i #flowthruthefight.

#workhard #livyoung