I can’t even…I don’t even….the words…they just….
Ok. Focus, Mariana.
Let me just start off by saying that as a blogger/social media user it is so easy to write and post and like and retweet and quote and share and “interact” while still feeling somwhat disconnected from my readers. This is why my experience at Fitbloggin was so special. All of these people who I have interacted with over the internet were in front of me, talking to me, hugging me, smiling at me, laughing with me and sweating with me. For the first time since the launch of Project Unfluff I felt a deeper connection not only to my fellow fitbloggers but to all of you and to this blog.
So many awesome things went down at FB13 that I’m having a hard time putting it into words so instead, I’m going to choose to focus on the one activity that completely blew my mind and has made an impact on me in a way I never expected.
Meet Particia Moreno of IntenSati. She was our fitness instructor on Friday morning for the Cardio Class sponsored by Reebok. For a full recap of the class, check out the Live Blog as written by Renisha James of Renewed Fitness.
Here was my experience: I felt like I had gone to church and came out feeling renewed like I had just had a spiritual experience. Before I get into that, let’s take a step back. You might be surprised to learn that when I was in high school I was a very devout Catholic. I went to mass every Sunday, went to weekly youth ministry events, attended retreats, Catholic teen conferences and mission trips. Although, I am not a practicing Catholic today for a variety of reasons that I will never get into on this blog, those experiences absolutely shaped my outlook on life, my spirituality and my belief that there is something bigger than us out there. I remember several occasions in which I had very moving spiritual experiences that brought me to tears and in one case, made me laugh uncontrollably. Those experiences left me feeling at peace and recharged with fresh energy and hope. To my absolute surprise, this was one of those moments too and it happened in a fitness class instead of in a church.
I can’t pinpoint the exact moment I started to feel that shift in my soul and that warmth in my heart, it was probably after the 10th time of repeating after Patricia when she told us to chant:
“I am powerful beyond measure.”
“I am stronger than I seem.”‘
“I am enough. I am enough”
“I am done complaining, I am now celebrating. I aspire to be all I can be and now I believe I will succeed.”
All of this while throwing punches and kicks. I went from thinking “Yeah, I’m a bad ass! Look at me punch!” to “Holy crap, I really am enough, this shit is deep.” And that’s when the tears started pooling in the corner of my eyes and for a moment I really thought I was going to lose it and have yet another “Let Go and Let God” moment like back in my more religious days. It was then that I took a second to grab a sip of water and try to collect myself because I honestly had no idea what was going to happen to me next if I kept that up. I knew that I wanted to keep going and I jumped right back in with butterflies in my stomach and a little skip to my heart. I couldn’t believe how powerful this class had become and I felt as though everyone around me felt the same way.
The energy in the huge banquet hall we were in was incredible, all of us were feeling it. On Saturday, I would hear about how those in the hallway who heard the chanting coming from us stopped in to see what was going on and were blown away by how intensely focused all of us doing the workout seemed. They felt it too, this woman up on stage is doing something special to the people in this room. Once the workout was over, I would say at least half of us bum-rushed Patricia for a picture, a hug and to thank her for the incredible experience. More than one fitblogger was so moved, they had clearly made it past the point I feared I would get to and were overcome by tears and emotions.
Nothing compares to the feeling of realizing for the first time or, in my case, being reminded that we are all enough. And this is a theme that was present in all aspects of FB13. We are enough, we are strong, we are powerful and we should be celebrating how far we have come and how much more we will accomplish. Regardless of where each one of us are in our journeys, we have been brave enough to share it with the world and we are stronger now than when we first started out.
I made some new friends this weekend, ate some incredible food, torched some serious calories (3700!) and learned some new things about blogging I never knew before. I also was starstruck by those that inspired me to launch my blog in the first place!
I will definitely go back again, hopefully every year from now until the end of time! And now it’s time for a photo recap!
Let’s talk about how funky Portland is!
The food in Portland is indescribable. Let’s just say that in PDX, it’s cool to eat locally grown, organic and naturally raised produce and meats. I’ve never tasted fresher foods at every meal like I did in Portland! I would go back just for that! Also, the VooDoo donuts were tasty but my sweet tooth is not what it used to be so I wouldn’t wait more than 20-30 minutes in line to try one. On my last day, they said the wait would be an hour and a half so I jumped on a bus to their second location and got donuts within 15 minutes. Those were for mancakes, not me!
The only thing I did not try was the CrossFit WOD and that’s because
felt like I was going to die had to complete my own Live Blog for the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) led by Karen C L Anderson.
I didn’t take a ton of pictures but when I remembered to whip out my camera, it was to take pictures of the bloggers I enjoyed meeting oh so much!
All in all, it was the time of my life! I would do it again in a heartbeat and if any of you want to talk more about it, feel free to reach out to me! Now back to real life. Humph!
Oh! and stay tuned for a post on all the swizz-ag! Hint: there might be a giveaway involved!