Friday, May 27, 2011

Team le Dream

The 6th Annual Charity Drag Show - A Fundraiser for the SF AIDS Walk is coming up in a few weeks. It benefits Stephanie Nicole le Dream, aka my amazing friend, Jimmy Gale. Jimmy will be doing the AIDS Walk in San Francisco next month. I will be joining him to enjoy the scenery and take photos.

I included Jimmy's story when I did a blog about Dan's AIDS/LifeCycle ride:
http://lolorashel.blogspot.com/2011/01/support-aids-lifecycle-fundraiser.html

I also did another blog about HIV that is worth checking out:
http://lolorashel.blogspot.com/2011/01/you-never-think-it-could-happen-to-you.html

The drag show and fundraiser at Club 1220 in Walnut Creek will be a blast. Jimmy hosted a fundraiser for the AIDS/LifeCycle riders and it was a lot of fun. We had raffle prizes and got to see lots of great drag performances. The fundraiser will be held Sunday, June 19th. Check out the link for this year's event on Facebook:

Dan is an artist and has created some amazing portraits that he would like to donate to Jimmy's walk. The portraits will be on display at a coffee house in Pittsburg for the next few months. He will be selling them and donating all of the money to the AIDS Walk San Francisco. If you'd like to see the portraits in person (or would like to see photos and bid online), check out the event page I set up:

http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=133618463380154

Speaking of Dan, here's his artist website:
http://www.cadano.net/

And here's an article about his AIDS/LifeCycle ride that was on the FRONT PAGE OF YAHOO! Go Dan!
http://news.yahoo.com/s/yblog_localsfbg/20110518/ts_yblog_localsfbg/man-overwhelmed-by-response-to-youtube-plea-for-aids-lifecycle-donations

From what I understand, Dan has made over $16,000 towards his ride. Congratulations!!!

Back to Jimmy!

Jimmy is one of those people that I met and felt like I had known forever. I will support him every way I can! If Jimmy raises $5,000, he will do the AIDS Walk in HEELS. This is a 6 mile walk, people. Let's bring the pain!

If you would like to donate directly to Jimmy on the AIDS Walk website, please check out this link:

http://awsf2011.kintera.org/faf/donorReg/donorPledge.asp?ievent=467364&lis=1&kntae467364=8E7AB03FB5EB4BB6A7C5A1988990FB45&supId=255238537

Otherwise, I hope to see you at one of the events posted above!

Photos of the portraits Dan will be selling:





Pictures of Jimmy and friends:







Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Mama Twirl

The other day, I wrote a story for More Magazine and submitted it to their website.  It is still awaiting approval, but I wanted to share it with everyone because the words are true and I think Mama Twirl deserves some recognition for being the oldest pole instructor in the world (her words, not mine...age ain't nothin' but a number)!

Inversions are the fountain of youth

Two years ago, I started taking pole dancing lessons at Twirly Girls Pole Fitness in Pleasanton, California.  The owner, Bel Jeremiah, was a little fire cracker.  She was so amazing to watch on the pole.  She showed us how pole dancing was not only sexy and fun, but athletic and beautiful.  I couldn't believe when I found out that Bel was approaching 60 years old (she celebrated her 59th birthday just yesterday).  You would never guess.  She is such an amazing person.  She makes all of her Twirly Girls feel like family.  She creates an atmosphere for women to feel safe and empowered -- to let all of their insecurities melt away and just learn how to dance and let their emotions out.  We asked Bel the secret to her youthfulness.  She told us, inversions are the fountain of youth.  I can only hope to have half as much energy when I reach the age of 60!  I want to thank Bel for giving me a fun place to work out and meet new friends!

*******

If you are a Twirly Girl or know Bel, please leave a comment letting her know how you've been affected by having her in your life.  Happy (belated) birthday, Mama Twirl!  Remember, 60 is the new 30!  :-)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Badges of Honor

When I started Twirly Girls almost two years ago, I had NO IDEA the damage I would do to myself.  Some people call them bruises.  I call them badges of honor. 

There is actually a page on Facebook called POLE SCARS.  You will see some injuries that will put mine to shame.  Keep in mind I'm doing this to myself and I'm not even doing the "good" tricks yet.  The worst ones seem to come from simply crawling around on the ground. 

I have always had a strange fascination with injuries.  I like watching things heal.  When I had an ingrown toe nail as a teenager, I sterilized a pocket knife and fixed it myself (and you can't even tell...all of my friends who went to the doctor to fix theirs have jenky toes now!).  When I get bruises, I will take photos and watch them heal over time.  I don't know why it's so interesting to me.  It just is.  So, my bruises at Twirly Girls have given me an infinite number of hours of enjoyment watching the healing process.  And I thought, why not share the pain?!  I know it drives Bel crazy that I post photos of my bruises on Facebook.  Trust me, it's not a sign of her skills as a teacher.  It just means I bruise easily.  :-)

So here we go.  Here are some of my favorite bruises and injuries from the last year or so. 





 (stiletto stab)


 (Too much sticky stuff on the hands)



 (Learning the Natasha toe slide)





Monday, May 23, 2011

The Blood Type Diet

So last week, I talked about a possible gluten-free diet. 

http://lolorashel.blogspot.com/2011/05/gluten-sensitivity-and-psoriasis.html

Friday night, I tried gluten-free pizza at Skipolini's.  It wasn't bad but it sure wasn't great.  My friend has been gluten-free for years and says that it's her favorite, so I assume after years of not eating bread, it probably does taste pretty good.  But when you had a delicious croissant for breakfast, there is no comparison. 

I think I would rather just eat less bread than replace it with gluten-free products.  Plus, my stomach was seriously upset after I ate the gluten-free crust.  Post-gastric bypass, my stomach has to think hard any time I eat new things -- even seven years later.  But, I had one piece Friday night and one piece Saturday.  And both times, my stomach was grumbling and very upset with me. 

I have heard for years about the Blood Type Diet.  It sounds interesting and some of what they say makes sense (and goes along with the whole gluten-free thing).  You can find lots of websites who say its all bullshit too.  I find with any diet, supplement, exercise, store, or whatever, you can usually find someone who loves and someone who hates it. 

My blood type is O positive.  So, according to this website:

Type O was the first blood type, the type O ancestral prototype was a canny, aggressive predator. Aspects of the Type O profile remain essential in every society even to this day – leadership, extroversion, energy and focus are among their best traits. Type O’s can be powerful and productive, however, when stressed Type O’s response can be one of anger, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. When Type O wiring gets crossed, as a result of a poor diet, lack of exercise, unhealthy behaviors or elevated stress levels, Type O’s are more vulnerable to negative metabolic effects, including insulin resistance, sluggish thyroid activity, and weight gain. When you customize your life to Type O’s strengths you can reap the benefits of your ancestry. Your genetic inheritance offers you the opportunity to be strong, lean, productive, long-lived and optimistic. 

The legacy of your Type O ancestry causes an immediate “fight or flight” response in people of this blood type. However, this finely tuned response to stress, so vital in early Type O’s, is not always so beneficial in modern times. The Type O response can cause bouts of excessive anger, temper tantrums, hyperactivity and even create a severe enough chemical imbalance to bring about a manic episode. Since there is a powerful, synergistic relationship between the release of dopamine and feelings of reward, Type O is more vulnerable to destructive behaviors when overly tired, depressed or bored. These can include gambling, sensation seeking, risk taking, substance abuse and impulsivity. To avoid becoming overstressed, Dr. D’Adamo recommends following the Type O diet, which focuses on lean, organic meats, vegetables and fruits and avoid wheat and dairy which can be triggers for digestive and health issues in Type O. Additionally, he suggests that Type O’s avoid caffeine and alcohol. Caffeine can be particularly harmful because of its tendency to raise adrenaline and noradrenaline, which are already high for Type O’s.  

So, it pretty much tells me to avoid gluten too. 

Here's my problem with "diets."  They don't work.  I can think of this as a lifestyle change, of course.  But I already know what works best for me -- ANYTHING in moderation.  I just don't work well when I have to cut something out completely.  Maybe its better for my body, but my crazy brain inserts itself and tells me I need to eat MORE of something if I try to cut it out.  And I can fight it for awhile but I always give in eventually.  It's so  much easier than battling my own mind.

I've lost weight before.  And I've had clear skin before.  I just need to keep eating right and exercising.  The weight will come off and my skin will look better.  I just need to be patient. 

Friday, May 20, 2011

Gluten sensitivity and psoriasis

I ran into a friend last night after Rob and I took a walk around the neighborhood.  She noticed a red spot on my face and asked if I had been in the sun too much.  Nope.  Just psoriasis ruining my life.  I tell her about how much I've been to the doctor lately and how many different medications I'm on just to keep it this crappy looking.  I forgot she also had psoriasis. 

She tells me...I went gluten-free and my psoriasis is essentially gone.  She shows me her elbows.  There is nothing there! 

YAY!  Ugh.

You know all about me and trying to cut something completely out of my life.  How'd that whole no-yeast thing turn out?

I know a couple of people who have gone gluten-free and it has done wonders for them.  This is definitely incentive to try it.  This is the worst my psoriasis has been in probably 8 years.  But I so lack willpower and cutting something out just makes me want it more.  Gluten/wheat is in EVERYTHING.  Even frickin' Doritos CORN chips have wheat in them! 

http://www.dermaharmony.com/psoriasis/celiacandpsoriasis.aspx

Overview

A growing body of evidence is beginning to show that there is a connection between psoriasis and gluten intolerance (celiac disease). For a small percentage of psoriasis sufferers there exists an important connection between what they eat and what happens to the skin.
When wheat flour is mixed with water, a complex protein called gluten develops. Gluten is what gives the dough of wheat an elastic structure that allows it to be crafted in a variety of ways. If wheat is high in gluten content it is called "brown" or "white" If it is called "weak" or "soft" the gluten content is low. If you are sensitive to gluten, avoiding wheat products containing gluten is the only way to prevent reaction.

About Gluten Intolerance

An estimated 2 million Americans suffer from an allergy that many don't even know exists. Celiac or gluten allergy could be the most common allergy afflicting Americans today. Recent research has revealed that an undiagnosed gluten allergy can be especially problematic for those suffering from psoriasis and other skin conditions. Though occasionally patients are asymptomatic, usually symptoms mimic other conditions, and often physicians misdiagnose it as Irritable Bowl Syndrome (IBS). The wide array of symptoms include:
  • Diarrhea
  • Bloating
  • Headaches
  • Canker sores
  • Fatigue
  • Irregular Menstrual Cycle
  • Joint Pain
  • Sleep Irregularity
Dermatitis Herpeformis, a persistent, itchy rash with red skin and watery blisters often appears on the knees, elbows, backs and buttocks of individuals with wheat allergies.

Celiac disease is a genetic condition where the body reacts to giladin, a gluten protein found in wheat, barley, and rye, by producing an enzyme called tissue transglutamise. The enzyme triggers an inflammatory reaction in the bowels which eventually leads to flattening of the villi lining the intestinal wall.

Villi, are finger like protrusions which line the sides of the intestines and filter out nutrients as waste passes through. When villi become flattened and unable to function, malnourishment can occur from vitamin deficiencies. If intestinal distress, and malnutrition aren't motivation enough, the Mayo Clinic website states that gluten intollerant people who continue to consume gluten are "at higher risk of developing cancer, especially bowel cancer or intestinal lymphoma."

Often celiac patients seek help from their doctors because they are suffering from mal-absorption problems and don't yet know the root cause. The most commonly seen problem is anemia due to lack of iron in the blood. Symptoms of anemia include: dizziness, insomnia, pale skin, and difficulty concentrating. Other often seen problems stem from lack of folic acid, B-12, Calcium and Vitamin D, all of which have troubling symptoms and some, like calcium deficiency, can lead to irreversible conditions such as osteoporosis. Those severely deficient in Vitamin K may experience abdominal bleeding. Because the villi are virtually stripped away, or severely incapacitated, often harmful bacteria build up in the small intestine causing a host of other problems such as Candida and/or Leaky Gut.

Celiac and Psoriasis

Since both celiac disease and psoriasis are conditions which affect the auto-immune system, research seeking connections between the two has recently increased. A 2004 article in Psoriasis Advance, a magazine published by the National Psoriasis Foundation, conducted an interview with Gerd Michaelsson, M.D., Ph.D, who in 1993 preformed a study which found that some patients with psoriasis also had one of the markers of celiac disease; increased antibodies to gliadin. Dr Michaelsson stressed that "most patients with psoriasis are not gluten intolerant. However, there is a subgroup with silent celiac disease/gluten intolerance and it is important to identify these patients, as there is a chance to considerably improve the skin lesions on the gluten-free diet (GFD). In some patients there may be a total or nearly total clearance on the diet. When gluten is reintroduced there is a flare up of the psoriasis." Dr. Michaelsson thinks that it is possible that some celiac sufferers may be predisposed to psoriasis, but have not had any problems since they adhere to a strict gluten-free diet.

An article in the April 2007 issue of World Journal of Gastroenterology, by L Abenavoli, L Leggio, G Gasbarrini, G Addolorato, seems to corroborate Dr. Michalessons research. Psoriasis patients who tested positive for the markers that indicate celiac and were put on a GFD. Researchers noticed "thirty of 33 patients strictly complied with GFD, have showed a significant decrease of psoriatic lesions." Celiac is a systemic disease, and not one that is isolated simply to the digestive system. The link between psoriasis is some people is clearly tied to a gluten-sensitive enteropathy (pathology [disease] of the intestine). While the cause for psoriasis still remains unknown, and may in fact be the result of numerous factors, celiac is a genetic condition.

The Psoriasis foundation quotes yet another researcher, Dr. Kruger who thinks that the link might just be odds "simple math dictates that it would be surprising if there weren't some people with both diseases." Indeed," Dr. Krueger says, "there is a certain small percentage of people in the general population with celiac disease, and a certain small percentage of people in the general population with psoriasis, so one should not be surprised to find a significant number of people who have both. Notwithstanding, many psoriatics go into remission when adhering to a GFD.

For many, the link between celiac and psoriasis is common sense. Digestive specialist Elizabeth Lispki, Ph.D., CCN asserts in her book Digestive Wellness, that diet is the cause of most auto-immune afflictions ranging from psoriasis to colitis. Dr. John O.A. Pagano and Deirdre Earls, RD, psoriasis specialists, believe that changing what we eat can help to alleviate psoriasis outbreaks.

At DermaHarmony we offer "Your Healing Diet, a Quick Guide to Reversing Psoriasis and Chronic Diseases with Healing Foods" by Deidre Earls RD, LD, an informative book which clearly outlines rules for an effective healing diet, to our clients. Though these diets don't rule out wheat completely, they suggest it be consumed occasionally in whole grain rather than processed form. All stress the importance of wheat avoidance for celiac sufferers. The consensus among these authors seems to be "healthy gut, healthy skin."

http://www.dermaharmony.com/skinnutrition/default.aspx

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gluten-free_diet

http://www.glutenfreecookingschool.com/archives/what-to-eat-on-a-gluten-free-diet-week-one/

http://www.cdhnf.org/user-assets/documents/pdf/GlutenFreeDietGuideWeb.pdf

**********

Has anyone else gone gluten-free?  How has it worked for you and how do you deal with eating out or passing up yummies that you know are bad for you?  How 'bout I just go with watermelon and protein shakes.  Does that work?

The continued misadventures of a Chilidog

Here's the last Chilidog update if you need/want to get caught up (which includes links to previous updates). 

On the outside, Chilidog was making a comeback.  He went from death's door to happy kitty in the span of a few days.  In only a few weeks, he's changed so much, we were certain the old Chilidog was pretty much back.  We went to the vet this week for a check-up.  We expected to hear great news -- Chilidog was making a full recovery!  Sure, we'd still be giving him his IV fluids every other day and his potassium twice a day (by mouth), but he'd happily be around for another 6 or 7 years.  Chilidog was up to 7.1 pounds -- a pretty big gain for a kitty that small.  His fur and skin looked and felt better.  The vet could even see his veins!

The vet called yesterday.  Rob was in the shower so I took the call.  She says, I have bad news.  I hesitated a second because I kind of thought she was kidding.  I'll spare you the full details but basically, Chili's creatinine has doubled and his phosphorus is high.  This means his muscles are still breaking down, and his bones could become brittle and break.  The phosphorus is binding with the calcium in Chilidog's bones.  So, now we have added a phosphorus binder to Chilidog's repertoire of medications -- orally three times a day.  It tastes like cherry and he's not a fan. 

So, I have no idea what's going to happen with the little dog.  Instead of 6 or 7 years, we are still hoping for a happy 1 or 2.  But we really don't know.  The vet is stumped.  She said she didn't expect these kinds of numbers.  She had told Rob at the last visit that, when the phosphorus gets high, we'll know he's close to the end.  He still doesn't act like a super sick kitty.  He's been active and playing with Zeus.  But his poor little insides are destroyed. 

Chilidog is a fighter, though, so I'm going to try to just enjoy the time we have with him and let him figure out the path he needs to take.  It sure isn't easy knowing he could be hurting and he's just so tough that he's not showing it. 










Thursday, May 19, 2011

When do you give up?

I saw a tweet from Psychology Today last month.  It was about when it was time to give up a goal.  I thought it was interesting and wanted to post a link to it here. 

http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/sapient-nature/201104/the-art-giving

The Art of Giving Up

The importance of disengaging from goals.
Interested in these topics? Go to Sapient Nature.

The world is obsessed with stories of success. There is a well-known concept in the management literature called "the survivor bias," which refers to the erroneous conclusions that researchers draw from focusing excessively on successful organizations and people. Pick up any magazine, and you will see the survivor bias in action: the stories are almost always about the successful; very few stories focus on the failures.

At one level, the focus on the successful is understandable; after all, we all want to be successful, and so, focusing on those who have already "been there and done that" would seem appropriate.

There is, however, a flip side. An obsession with success can have negative side effects on what arguably matters even more in life: being happy.
Kids today face tremendous pressure to persevere to succeed, but is such success worth it?

One of the key drivers of success is perseverance and a "never say die" attitude. This is epitomized in a variety of sayings, such as, "the harder you work, the luckier you get," (a quote by the South African Golfer Gary Player), and "Never, never, never, give up" (Winston Churchill's famous quote). The focus on hard work and achieving success appears to have reached a feverish pitch in recent years: Even kids in kindergarten are reminded of the importance of perseverance, as the picture of the mural that I took at my son's school indicates. Children today are so overworked that they don't get the requisite amount of sleep. All this hard work and focus on goals has probably enhanced our productivity, but what is not as well known is the cost at which such success is earned.

Are successful people necessarily happier?

At least two streams of research are relevant for addressing this question. First is research on ego depletion, which suggests that willpower is a limited resource, much like muscle strength or mental energy. When a person spends willpower on one activity (to study for an exam), the amount of willpower left for a subsequent activity (to overcome temptation to have a dessert) is diminished. This means that when one is obsessed with a particular goal (getting good grades at school), other goals (going to the gym, maintaining healthy relationships, etc.) whose achievement also depends on the same pool of willpower, naturally flounder. Ego-depletion theory would thus predict that the more one is driven to achieve success, the less one will be able to focus on other important determinants of life-satisfaction.

Findings from research on hyperopia also lead to similar conclusions. Hyperopia is the opposite of myopia, and myopia, as we all know, refers to the tendency to be too shortsighted and impulsive. Most of us are constantly warned against being myopic: "Don't be extravagant, save for the future," or "avoid unhealthy food for the sake of future health," or, "exercise regularly to be healthy," etc. Perhaps as a result of exposure to such messages, many of us are habituated to thinking about the future consequences of our present actions. For instance, rather than choosing to work in an area that is intrinsically motivating, many of us choose to work in an area that we think will be "hot" in the near future. Likewise, when buying a home, we focus too much on whether it is a good investment rather than on whether we will enjoy living in it.

In other words, most of us sacrifice our present-day enjoyment for the sake of a future that may never really arrive, as a set of studies by Kivetz and Keinan showed. These researchers interviewed people in the winter years of their life, and asked them what they would change about their past if they could re-live their lives. Findings from one study revealed that people consistently wished that they had been a little less work-oriented, that is, a little less focused on being successful, and a little more pleasure-orientated, that is, a little more focused on enjoying life. Other studies, both by these authors and by others, yielded similar results.

What this suggests then, from the perspective of maximizing well-being and happiness, is that it may be more important to give up on goals that take too much out of us than to pursue them at all cost. Studies by Wrosch and his colleagues confirmed this thesis. Across three studies, they found that people who are able to disengage from unattainable goals are happier than those who continue to pursue them. Studies from another paper, also by Wrosch and his colleagues, showed that those who disengage from goals that are exceedingly difficult to attain experience health benefits, like lowered levels of cortisol (the stress hormone).

The million-dollar question, of course, is: how does one decide when to give up a particular goal? This is not an easy question to answer, which is why deciding which goals to give up, and when, is an art rather than a science. Perhaps no single answer is appropriate for everyone. However, if you feel that you are highly stressed (e.g., if you need sleeping pills to fall asleep), and if you feel that your stress is mainly due to your obsession with goal-attainment (as opposed to, say, failing health or poor relationships), you could take it as a sign that you are too goal-directed for your own good.

This is not to say, of course, that any goal that produces stress should be abandoned; indeed, in an earlier post, I argued against giving up too fast--before reaching the tipping point of expertise. To figure out which goals to keep at and which ones to jettison, ask the question: What am I trying to prove--and to whom--by achieving the goal? The only goals worth stressing about are those that help you grow as a person, either by helping you enhance your expertise in a domain or by helping those around you. Goals that are pursued for the sake of making even more money than needed, or ones that are pursued for the sake of signaling superiority are simply not worth losing sleep over.

But even more basic than figuring out which goals to pursue and which ones to abandon, is having the clarity to accord the goal of leading a happy and fulfilling life your number 1 priority. Do you have it? If not, be aware that you may grow to be one of those who, like the participants in Kivetz and Keinan's study, regret having sacrificed enjoyment for the sake of success.

*****

I guess before I decide to give up a goal, I first have to decide if I really, truly tried my best to reach it in the first place.  ;-)

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

The amazing and talented Shelly Lamb

What is your fitness background?

I started with Jane Fonda in the 80's, LOL...moved on to studying dance in college (age 25), started teaching pilates (certified in mat and apparatus), yoga, dance in the gyms, also were I started teaching pole fitness around 2007. 

Do you have a dance background?

I started formal training as a dancer at 25, though I think my informal dance education came as a result of my older sister dragging me along to parties when she had to baby sit. I begged for dance lessons in youth, but my parents were too poor to pay for them. Once I entered college I paid for them myself. I think dance kept me from a life of too much partying.
 
What interested you about pole dancing?

I like pole dancing because of the fitness aspect, the fact that I don't have to rely on a partner, and also because there is so much room to be creative with other dance and movement styles.
I was asked to teach pole dancing at a gym I worked at when they decided to put poles up and didn't have anyone who knew how to teach pole. I got really into it for myself about a year later.

What made you decide to start competing? 

I have a performing bug in me as a result of all the dance training and performing I have done. I got into competing more as a result of my desire to perform, than a desire to compete; other than strip clubs there really aren't a lot of opportunities for pole fitness/performing so I submitted my first pole video for USPDF in 2008/9?..gonna have to dig that up and re-post to my youtube channel. 

Do you have a preference? "pole fitness" or "pole dancing"

Pole dancing, though I do use the other term too, especially outside the pole community.

What do you think about the stripper vs. fitness debate?

I think that no matter what side of the fence you sit on the issue everyone is in agreement that it isn't the same, even the men/women that leave derogatory remarks on media posts about the subject are unknowingly agreeing that it's not the same...So I don't know what everyone is fighting about.

What is your favorite product to help you stick to the pole?

Rubbing alcohol and Dry hands for my hands. For key grip points on my body I am currently using dew point since everything else dries my skin out so bad.

Do you like to dance in heels or barefoot?

...heels for sure.

What did you do before opening your pole studio?

Before I opened my business, I was a trainer (pilates and dance mostly). I also did a bit of performing as a theatrical dancer and worked as a go go dancer for many years.

What is your favorite thing about dancing on the pole?

Creating full dances incorporating all of the dance styles i have studied, watching my clients light up when they learn a new routine or pole move.

What is your favorite song to dance to (at this moment)?

Exogenensis (redemption) and purple rain by prince.

What do you do to prepare for competitions? 

Lots of warmup including stretching and limbering exercises (at least 30mins prior to getting on the pole to avoid injury). I take beginning contortion classes to inspire me to stretch more (I don't enjoy stretching much). I usually train on the pole about 5 days a week 1 to 2 hours per day and I stretch after each session for 45mins to 1 hour afterward, Lots of Epson salt baths (careful it is a mild laxative, lol) The last competition I overtrained the last couple of weeks prior to competing, I don't recommend this and knew better, but certain personal situations in my life kept me off the pole a month before the competition and I tried to make up for lost time...big mistake. 

**********
Shelly Lamb has her own studio in San Francisco.  Check out her website:  http://www.shellyspolestudio.com/

She is also teaching S.L.A.P.D. at Twirly Girls Pole Fitness in Pleasanton, California.
http://www.twirlygirlspolefitness.com/

Check out some photos from the Lovely Rita Fundraiser at Twirly Girls and video from Shelly's performance at East Meets West Tripole Challenge last year:






Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Bay to Breakers

So last Sunday, I participated in the 100th annual Bay to Breakers race in San Francisco.  I had heard stories about how crazy it was.  Hundreds of thousands of people converging on downtown San Francisco.  Costumes.  Floats.  Naked people.  Drunk people.  Crazy people.  I have to admit, I was a little scared.

Yolanda and I rode BART over.  We had to leave around 6:00 a.m.  The first corral was scheduled to release at 7:00 a.m.  We were scheduled to start by 7:45-8:00 a.m.  We got off at our stop, walked up the stairs and basically walked straight into our corral, around the corner, over the start line and started the race at 7:30 a.m.  No waiting. 

Bay to Breakers is a 12k race (about 7-1/2 miles).  55,000 people were signed up to run and/or walk.  It meanders through the streets of San Francisco and ends at the ocean.  It was such a beautiful day.  A tiny bit of rain but mostly sunny and awesome.  There weren't nearly as many naked people as I thought there would be (although I did see way more fat, old men wieners than I needed to see).  There was a crack down on alcohol, floats, people who hadn't signed up and fun in general (according to the news stations).  But I still had a great time.  There were a lot of fun costumes, hilarious people, house parties along the route playing music and having fun.  There was only one hill, and even that wasn't very difficult.  It was mostly a flat course.  We stopped to take pictures and gawk at nude guys.  My official time was 2:57:37.  Yolanda was number 38,850 and I was number 38,854.  Not bad.  That means 12,000 people were behind us!  Yeah, it was over a 20 minute mile, but we had fun and took in a lot of interesting sights!  I would say we were pretty much done walking by mile 5, but we pushed through and did the final 2.5 miles.  I was wearing a pair of socks, nylons, more nylons, socks and then my shoes.  So my poor toes were squished to death.  My costume was more of just a silly outfit.  I'll post a photo below.  It definitely got a lot of attention though. 

So, two days later, I'm a bit sore in the legs and hip but I otherwise feel great.  I have another Brazen race in about two weeks and I'm hoping to really work on my time on that one.  


I know Bay to Breakers has been struggling and may be canceled next year.  I really hope they continue because I'd love to do it again!  Next year, I'll have to enter the costume contest.  :-)














Only one blister!!  WOOHOOO!!!