Cross Training – now and then

I have been home for the past few weeks and it’s been absolutely lovely. One of the great pleasures of being home is that I can train whenever and however I please. While at Hoodstock, I tend to keep odd hours (but not really for a lindy hopper) and sometimes I train at 7pm, 11pm, or 1am. The thing is, I can train whenever I feel like it and have a solid session because I chose to be there. That being said, I train when I don’t necessarily want to, but there is nothing like being motivated and getting to do your thing.

Before ILHC I would do 20-40 minutes on the elliptical machine and then dance around to charleston music. Sometimes I’d learn a jazz routine online and run that a bunch of times, or run the solo jazz standards like The Big Apple, Trankie Do, and the Al & Leon Shim Sham. Or sometimes I’d switch it up and do some Tahitian dancing. Whatever I felt. It was awesome.

I find that just doing lindy hop doesn’t quite keep me in the same shape it used to. Mind you, it still does a great job, but I find that I mostly work the same muscles over and over again. I recently (like last week) added tap into my cross training and that just kicks my ass. Wow, there is so much more bouncing in tap (Note: I am choosing to bounce as much as I do…sometimes I try to take some of the hopping out so I can speed things up, otherwise I feel like I am jumping rope…..a very thin rope)!

So yeah. Cross train. It’s important to keep your muscles balances (we tend to either lead or follow….one side is dominant), keep up your flexibility, and keep expanding your dance mind. Just ask Bobby White how important it is to cross train, or Marty Klempner; P90X anyone?

And here is a short article from the New York Times, 25 January 1939 edition (page 18). If you need something historical to get you up and moving, hopefully this will do it!

1939: Doctor Advises Jitterbugs to Train

Advises Jitterbugs to Train

Advises Jitterbugs to Train
Jitterbugs should train in the same way that athletes do, or face the prospect of thick ankles, broken, maladjusted feet and exhausted nervous systems, according to Dr. John J. Lalli of the Philadelphia College of Osteopathy. He holds that no good can come from doing the Susie-Q, the Big Apple or other such modern dances, and describes them as “throwbacks to the war and religious dances of primitive tribes.”

Being Home

I love being home. It is one of the greatest feelings in the worlds, and I’ve obviously spent too much time under rating it, otherwise I’d surely have been here more.

I love driving the truck. The Trooper, albeit boxy and rusted, is exactly as it’s name states: a trooper! I didn’t know whether or not it was going to start yesterday, but it started right up like a champ after not having been driven in months. I’ve enjoyed driving around an area that I am very familiar with, doing things I used to do, and seeing sights that are familiar. I enjoy getting to come back to a place that I call mine. Even though my room is a wreckage, it’s my wreckage. My clothes are strewn from hither and yonder and there are boxes piling up in every corner imaginable, yet, this glorious mess, which truthfully makes me very uncomfortable, is mine and no one will touch it because no one will be in my room until I get back. I revel in this idea.

The weather in Pitty has been lovely. It was cold last night, but tonight it’s about 60-65 and it’s awesome. And the weather during the day has been bright and sunny, probably up in the mid 70s. Wow….Pittsburgh is kinda awesome. And I missed it.

I’ve done a ton of shopping, which is a huge mistake, mostly because I don’t have enough space for my new purchases. Almost all of the pieces are coming with me to Europe, however, there isn’t a lot of space left in my room. I’ve already gone through my clothes and made a large pile of things to give away, but there is still so much there. Yikes. I can now admit that I love having a closet – full of clothes – that are mine – that I have hangers for – and drawers. Oooooh, how I love being home!!

I feel….normal. Being here at Hoodstock makes me feel normal. Walking around the mall and smelling Abercrombie gives me the sense of being normal and every day. I guess, then, that how I tend live my life doesn’t feel make me feel normal. I feel extraordinary.

Q&A – Where is home?

I spend a lot of time on the road, and I am often asked “Where is home for you?”

The simple answer is where ever my suitcase is. Today it’s Fullerton, CA and tomorrow it will be Pittsburgh, PA again. By the end of September, I will have four different “homes”: Pittsburgh, Columbus, Seattle, and Berkeley. By the end of November I will have considered seven more places home: Cologne, Buenos Aires, Quebec, Grenoble, Hamburg, Genoa, and Lima.

Originally home was Lafayette, CA, a small suburb outside of San Francisco on the other side of the Caldecott Tunnel. In June 2004 after my brother graduated from high school, my parents moved to Seattle and I was upset about it. I understood that there was no reason for my parents to continue living in suburbia, especially since the kids had left the nest and my mother was no Stepford wife, but Lafayette had always been considered home and with them moving, I was not going to be able to return to the place that I grew up in.

While attending UCI, Irvine was considered “ school home” and Seattle was “home-home;” after all, that is where my boxes, spare clothing, childhood trophies, and parents were. Before graduating, “home” had also been in Osaka, Japan and Montpellier, France. After graduating, I moved into Kevin’s house in Pittsburgh, PA so that we could dance full-time. And then we started traveling. And then it got complicated.

As the hours ticked along from time spent away from home (referencing Pittsburgh), I would catch myself saying things like “I need to go home before we go to the dance tonight” (that location) or “my boyfriend is back at home” (Pittsburgh) or “last week my suitcase exploded when I got home” (anywhere) and they all referenced different places. So where was home for me?

While traveling, the immediate “home” is where my suitcase is. When thinking about how great it will be to go “home” and sit and relax, it’s Pittsburgh. Getting to be home and being taken care of is where my parents are, Seattle. And at the end of this month I’ll get to head back home to see my aunt next week, and then I’ll be in Berkeley.

Home can be anywhere. Home is a place where I can relax and take a shower. Home is where the bed I am sleeping in is. Home is a place where I can stretch in my underwear. Home is the place where I can be me and not have to censor myself. Home is where I make it.

Trying to get Home

It’s the Monday following the 4th of July and I am still in Seattle. Not that that is a bad thing; however, I was supposed to be heading home at about 8am and here now my flight is not until 1:30pm.

I woke up at 7:15am, showered, wolfed down some breakfast and headed to the airport. My mom and I left early because we’d be driving at prime traffic time, and it’s Cruise Season, so most likely there was going to be a bunch of traffic this morning, yet there was not. So i arrive at about 8am and as I am looking at the monitor to figure out what gate I am departing from, I don’t see my flight up there. I went to the touch screen thingy and typed in my info and my flight had been moved to 11:45am. That kinda sucks because I was there so early, but it sucked even more because then I would only have 25 minutes to catch my next flight.

I head up to the Premier Desk (I didn’t belong there, but there was no one in line) and asked what time I’d get into SFO and then gave Carol my boarding passes and asked whether or not I could make my flight. All signs pointed to no. But just as luck would have it, I could be booked on another flight leaving at 11:30am and then transfer in Denver, which would get me home around midnight. Good news: I am still getting home
“today”. Bad news: it’s super later and I have a flight leaving for Sweden tomorrow at 1:15pm. I inquired to whether or not there were any other options and was then booked on the 1:45pm flight. Man, life is good.

So now my mum and I are paling around, running errands, and nibbling on tasty treats. We stopped by Tully’s to grab some coffee and I grabbed a Red Velvet cupcake at Cupcake Royal next door. Tasty goodness!! We headed home and I picked up the place while mummsy check the garage (apparently it had been broken into). What a morning!

Now we are at her office and I am blogging. I wanted to do some painting this weekend, but it will have to be another time.

Hopefully I’ll get home, grab more stuff for Herrang, run some errand, and then catch my next flight. What a life, eh?