Tweetdeck: Desktop application that allows me to view my following feed, @ replies, DMs, find potential new follows and a facebook feed
Ubertwitter: BlackBerry phone app that let’s me keep up w/ Twitter while I’m on the go. Subway morning reading to see what happened while I was sleeping and checking in the evenings before I go to sleep.
Brizzly: A web based application that allows me to group who I’m following on Twitter. In theory great idea, haven’t implemented it yet.
Adnews: Everything from brand campaigns to website sponsorships to who’s hiring who in the advertising/marketing landscape
Media In Canada: New campaign launches, new media initiatives and info about top shows and advertisers on radio or TV
I decided to enter one of the biggest competitions in Toronto, let alone Canada as my first competition. Ok so I aim high! I was nervous, crazy excited and had no idea what to expect. Thank goodness I was able to experience the competition with a fellow Hourglass Workout girl, Chivon John and my personal trainer Lyzabeth Lopez. They kept me sane, gave me pep talks, took pictures with me for our standard facebook picture albums and kept me calm in the change-room.
I was competing in the Diva Bikini Model category. When I first registered for the contest I was under the assumption that there would be a pro category and an open (amateur) category. Although I may have a lot of self-confidence competing against fitness models that have been on the cover of Oxygen Magazine several times is a tiny bit intimidating. Ok so it caused me to have a slight panic attack. They had merged the category together and I found out the night before at the Athlete’s Meeting. So I think I psyched myself out a little bit. Ok I totally psyched myself out of the competition.
I tried my best to rock it on stage but I knew that my attitude had changed. It showed in my walk and on my face and I was further disappointed to find out that I didn’t place top 10 which had been my goal. I could’ve given up at this point and said meh I competed on stage. I have changed my fitness and health around. I have a great new body and I conquered fears of appearing on stage and rocked the stage in an itty bitty bikini. I licked my wounds, got some much needed confidence back and set my sights on my next competition.
Ok so the Hourglass family decided to head down to the Olympia weekend in Vegas. If you know bodybuilding this is one of the events to be at during the year. Flex Magazine hosts a Bikini Model Search every year so I thought sure! Why not! I arrived to find out I was competing against 90 other competitors. Gasp! And there goes that twinge that is telling my confidence to drop. Pause. Take a deep breath you can do this. I had already paid my entry fee, booked a spray tanning w/ Pro Tan and brought my bikini with me. No way was I backing out on this one. The best part of my experience was having my girls Chynna Chung and Chivon John smiling up at me from the stage. They snuck into VIP seating (shhh!) and sat right behind the judge’s table so I couldn’t miss them. It’s thanks to them I was able to beam on stage. I found the girls in this competition quite tight in their physiques. I also wasn’t aware of the online voting part of the contest so I have a better strategy for next year 😉 No top 16 placement but still a great experience, hot photos from the stage and a great chance to meet girls backstage from all over the world. The competitor behind me was from France so I got to practice my bilingualism backstage. Time to head back to Toronto and re-focus for my 3rd competition.
My experience at UFE Halloween Mayhem was a positive, fun, learning, exhausting and overall great experience. I had returned from Vegas having caught a nasty bug on the plane ride home. No more red eye flights for me. I wasn’t able to workout for a week after returning and was scared I wouldn’t be ready in time. I had 3 weeks to revamp the bod for Oct 24 and I trained hard. My first week back in the gym I had a weird time training certain muscles. I would work out my back and my shoulders would hurt the next day. Focus on my glutes and have inner thighs screaming. The last two weeks before UFE went by smoothly. The meal plan was back in effect, the muscles were hurting in the right place, I had a great costume idea being made and my focus and goal of placing top 10 was still in my brain.
I was able to experience this contest with my training partner Gule Sheikh. We met this summer during a Fitness Model Workshop, ran by, of course, the lovely Lyzabeth Lopez, and started a couple of personal training sessions with Lyzabeth together. We drove down Friday morning, had fun getting spray tanned together, making jokes about being water depleted and had a great chance to enjoy the experience. The atmosphere at UFE was so much different than WBFF and Flex. There were friendly faces backstage, great friends competing together and an organized show with a schedule that all competitors were made aware of well in advance. I felt confident knowing what was going on and could focus on performing well onstage. I rocked the Bikini Model round in a butterfly costume and was able to stand out on stage enough to place number 9! I don’t really care what number it was. It was Top 10. My goal accomplished. I could smile and enjoy the placing!
After spending countless hours in the gym over the past year I’ve seen my share of weird stuff, gross stuff and some nice things as well. Here is my list of Gym Do’s & Dont’s. Hopefully you get a kick out of these, can totally relate or maybe see something you do and didn’t realize others may be making fun of you on blogs, twitter or facebook. Just looking out for all the gym peeps 🙂
1. Cardinal Rule Number 1: Wear Deodarant. ‘Nuff Said.
2. Making Weird Noises throughout your entire set. I totally understand the need to grunt to finish of a heavy set sometimes. But there is this one gentleman at my gym who grunts despite the set, despite the number of reps. Mind you he’s wearing headphones and may not be aware of the caveman status I have given him but it’s awkward for the rest of the gym goers to witness this manly display of exertion.
3. Working In. The term used when you see someone on the machine you want to use and ask them to work in. In other words share the machine. You could receive the answer: “I’ve only got one more set”. Cool. “I’ll wait until your done” scenario happens. If they’ve just started then they should allow you to share the machine. I do one set. You do one set. So on and so forth. If they say no and look like they might eat you, probably best to just move along and avoid problem.
4. Carry a Towel. The gym I work out at provides them in the change room and on the gym floor. There is no reason why you shouldn’t have one with you to put on the bench or wipe up your sweat after a set. I don’t care if you think you didn’t sweat. I don’t want the heeby jeebies on the bench no matter how hot you are 🙂
5. Put the Weights Back. One time I had to remove six 45 plates off the leg press. I wanted to thank the guy for the amazing arm workout I was getting in on my leg day. Always leave the plate machines with nothing on them. Easy? Cool.
6. Cover Up. Ok so you’re back in the gym. You’re getting the body that you want. Now you’re going to flaunt it. Totally understand the need for tank tops in the gym to allow free arm movement. But ladies. Common sense. No need to work out in sports bras and cause distractions in the gym for men. Just throw on a tight tank and you’re good to go. Same thing men. Those hanging muscle tanks that allow me to see both pecs. Save it for another time. Now back in the changeroom I also have a beef with all you ladies who like to wander in the nude. I’m sure this happens in the men’s as well. Good for you being proud of your free status but just cover it up. I’m not a prude. But you might be offending someone else. I just don’t wanna see it. K?
7. Fix Bad Form. Ask a trainer for tips, or an experienced gym goer if you’re not sure. Just suck it up and ask. Because if I see bad form again I’m not going to look the other way. What you’re doing won’t improve your physique and it may hurt you. So there is controversy on whether people should offer form advice. The general rule is no but next time I’m just not going to be able to let it slide. It hurts me to watch and it’s going to hurt you in the end. I’ll try and just whisper the advice so noone notices.
8. Mirror Staring. You are allowed to check your progress in the mirror. Just try and avoid the stare that goes over 5 mins and has you lifting up your shirt to check out the abs in public 😉
I have been on a blogging hiatus. We could chalk it up to writer’s block or lack of creativity or busy time period at work. But I’m back. Pondering why did I choose the career path I have taken so far.
I graduated from University with the I’m going to rule the business world mentality. I’m still working on it but slightly milder and meek in my approach to learning and climbing the corporate ladder. I’m listening and watching and truly hungry to learn.
When I started out in the summer of 2005 after having turned down a great paying opportunity and going through interview after interview I was getting frustrated. I hadn’t really thought about my future after 4th year as I had been so involved extracurricularly that I could barely think straight. When my first company decided to take me on as their sole sales rep I jumped at the chance and the opportunity. I learn how to be savvy, read people, get out of my shell and go for the things I really want. I was meeting with media planners and they had the ball in their court. So pretty much I just told myself “you need to become a media planner”. They hold all the cards. Yes I’m a naive little thing.
I love my days. I love the juggling. I love the people interaction. Internal meetings, client meetings, and working with creative agencies. I love working with the numbers. Yes I may be running a high fever. But when the numbers work out and I can plan a campaign that matches the budget and accomplishes the media objectives it’s my tiny little triumph for the day. It’s the feeling that makes me get up and go back into the office every day. I love the challenge of new media. I like reading about new campaigns and new uses of technology to engage consumers.
So after making the leap and joining the ranks of media planner, strategists or just plain old planners I’m yet again faced with who really has the reigns. Do marketing departments have the top hat? And if so why do they hold their cards so close to their chest instead of truly trusting their partners to have their best interests in mind?
Company sales are our goals too. Trust us and involve us in your business. Please and Thank You.
[I now work for a full service agencies where the client holds out the entire deck of cards!]
This line from Media in Canada made my morning: “Flashpoint will go into production on a second season of the shot-in-Toronto action series early next year after CTV ordered 13 more episodes of the prime-time hit yesterday.”
Yeahhhh for Bald Men who get ratings! This show is awesome, well-written, well cast and I definitely enjoy it.
The great part about this show in the Media world is that it was picked up on both sides of the border. CBS records an average of 7 million viewers while CTV consistently averages 1.1 million viewers since the show launched in July. Next fist pump is due to the shift from Friday to a Thursday time slot. Which I’m sure helped out the ratings factor. They started the show in the summer during a slow time to grow an audience who will hopefully stay loyal beyond the summer months.
The characters are developing well. From Jules played by Amy Jo Johnson to Sam, Sgt. Gregory Parker and Ed Lane (the bald man if you are unfamiliar with the show). I saw Amy at the CTV.ca Fall Up fronts and for the life of me couldn’t remember what she was on prior to this show. I had to read her bio to find out it was Felicity. However she is making her mark with this show and asserting herself as the lone female for all the women viewers to identify with [new female in last week’s episode!]. The characters deal with their jobs and have human moments that endear us and recognize the profession for what it is. Difficult and Heartwarming.
So CSI has helped put Vegas, Miami and New York on the map. Will Flashpoint do the same for Toronto?
That’s a whole other blog about destination marketing and TV shows.
[This show is now in it’s 2nd season and I’m so proud I called it a success!]