Here’s What You Need To Know Before Trying Pole Fitness

Soooo I did a thing.

A couple months ago, I decided I wanted to do something really fun with my mom. I’m mildly obsessed with her, actually. She likes to say that if I could, I’d probably try to crawl back into her womb. I’m such a weirdo that when I go back to Connecticut for the weekend, I get legitimately offended when she doesn’t devote all of her time to hanging out with me. I’ll legit force her to let me go out to dinner with her and her friends. Luckily for her, I’m not a regular daughter, I’m a cool daughter. I can totes hang with the ladies and be one of the gang. Aside from the impending menopause and endless complaining about my husband (single, party of me!), I fit in rather seamlessly.

So when I asked her to block off her Saturday to spend time with me for a surprise afternoon, she happily agreed. She kept asking what we were doing, but I’m not an idiot. I was fully aware that if I told her, there was no way in hell I’d get her to actually go with me. Guys, I wish you could’ve seen the look on her face as we got closer to the studio. First of all, the studio is in Meriden, which is about a 25 minute drive from where we live. Once we got off the exit, she was immediately suspicious. Within five minutes we had passed two adult stores and a strip club. Then we pulled into the parking lot of the shopping center where the studio is located, and she was still clueless. I finally told her we were going to a pole dancing class at The Girl Spot and I swear to you, I almost died from laughing when I saw her face. If looks could kill, I’d have been as good as gone. TBH, I’m shocked I actually got her to go in the studio after that. But we were already there and I had already paid, so there was no turning back…

When you start off in pole fitness, most studios will make you take a beginners class. There’s no hanging upside down or crazy stunts during your first time. Trust me, you wouldn’t be able to do them anyway. They’re WAY harder than they look. By the grace of God, my mom and I were the only two people taking the beginner class that day, so we had 1 on 1 attention the whole time. We had an AMAZING instructor. Somehow, someway, she managed to get my mom to actually enjoy what she was doing!

The class starts off with a warmup. There’s a ton of stretching involved, because you should be nice and loosey goosey before trying any pole tricks. There’s also some conditioning. Trust me, you want to be as strong as possible for any of the tricks involved. You should be prepared to do pushups, situps, planks and lunges. No questions – you will 100% be breaking a sweat during this. After the warmups are complete, you’re ready for your first move! Ours wasn’t on the pole… yet. Our teacher demonstrated the floorwork for this particular move a handful of times, and then had us show her ourselves, where she then corrected and applauded us. The entire experience is truly freeing, and totally positive. You never feel like you’re being criticized, just encouraged.

Once that was mastered, it was finally time to hit the pole! In just a half an hour, we learned a quick routine that, for lack of better words, made me feel sexy and feminine. I have never been so proud of my mom as when I saw her swing around the pole.. how bizarre does that sound?! She was so stinking cute and so proud of herself when she got it right, and I was so happy to see how confident she looked doing it. I don’t know about you, but I don’t know too many mother daughter duos who could manage to complete a pole dancing class together, and look good doing it 😉

The aftermath was no joke. I can’t remember the last time I’ve been so sore. Seriously, I’ve never been that sore from a workout before. For four days. Ugh. And be prepared, because you’re going to get bruised. I have no idea how, but my mom managed to get most of her bruises on her arms (something tells me she wasn’t doing something right), but mine were all on my legs (mostly my thighs) from holding onto the pole with my legs in a death grip lol. It was an ugly sight, I’ll tell you that much. Not too ugly, apparently, because we happily went back to our second class the following weekend. That one, my friends, was exponentially more challenging. If you ever want to feel like a weakling, I encourage you to try to climb a stripper pole with nothing but your body to get you up it. Who knew I had next to no muscles? I certainly didn’t. Forget trying to climb the pole, I could hardly hold myself up on it for longer than two seconds. I did, however, learn two new tricks that made me feel pretty badass, so there’s that.

Here’s the lesson in all of this: step out of your comfort zone. Just because you don’t think you’d like something or you don’t think you’d be good at something, that doesn’t make it true. You might find that you make some of the best memories out of something you never thought you’d do. I challenge you to make a plan right TODAY to do something you wouldn’t normally be comfortable with. If that’s pole dancing, then great! If it’s jumping out of a plane (with a parachute!), even better. Try to push yourself – you might just find that you actually love what you never thought you’d try. xo, AJ

Santa That’s My Only Wish This Year

So this really odd thing happened to me. I closed my eyes for a sec and when I opened them, it was already December 6th. What?!

It’s gotten to that point where my mom has already asked for the first round of my Christmas list. If our moms are anything alike, then you already know that my mom asks for my list multiple times throughout the month of December, because even though I’m either emailing it or texting it (read: HOW ARE YOU LOSING THE LIST MOM!?), she still manages to stay asking me for it up until Christmas Eve. The disorganization is mind-blowing, but she still manages to get stuff wrapped and under the tree in time, bless her heart. Which is more than I can say for some people – I once was texting my then-boyfriend on Christmas morning asking how his Christmas was going and what he had gotten. His response? “Idk yet, my mom is still wrapping it.” OMG BYE. My anxiety would be through the room at that point.

Anyways, as I was sending my mom my list, I wanted to share some gifting inspo with you guys. I frequently find myself googling, “good gifts for 20-somethings” because I forget what I even want to ask for half of the time. The struggle thooo. Also, including some discount codes for you in case something strikes ya fancy 😉

My Holiday Wish List 2017

wishlist

 

1. Custom Pet Portrait 2. Unicorn Tears Gin (also comes in Vodka) 3. Function of Beauty Custom Hair Care 4. Lauren Conrad Handbag 5. Apple Airpods 6. Framebridge Custom Framing 7. Lulu Lemon Sports Bra 8. Chunky Knit Blanket 9. Nora NYC Sunglasses 10. What Do You Meme 11. My Urban Oasis Subscription Box 12. Soda Stream 13. Clue – Golden Girls Edition

Deals & Codes

Function of Beauty: Purchase through my link and get $5 off of your order. I truly love this stuff – you can read my full review of it here.

Framebridge: Use code *blonde15* for 15% off of your order! I purchased several of these for Mother’s Day and Father’s Day – you can read the review here.

Nora NYC Sunglasses: Use code *lauhgingblonde* for 10% off of your order!

My Urban Oasis Subscription Box: Use Code *TLB20* for 20% off of your first box! This is a really cool subscription box (tailor-made for you NYC ladies!) that has products + gift certificates included for restaurants, workout classes, museums etc. in the city. I highly recommend checking it out if you’re in the area.

 

Holiday Gift Guide – Girlfriends Edition

Hi guys! First off, I want to thank those of you who voted in my Instagram polls last week – thank you so much! Your feedback on what content you prefer makes my job so much easier, and makes it so that I’m able to work on things that you like seeing!

That said, this post is going to be the first in a series of posts coming in the next few weeks for gift guides. And, because I find this category especially fun to shop for, the Girlfriends’ Gift Guide is up first!

Girlfriends Gift Guide

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  1. Work It Out Exercise Mat  2. Olivia Burton After Dark Leather Strap Watch  3. Sugarfina Mini Martini Shaker & Candy Gift Set  4. Rose Hibiscus Hydrating Face Mist  5. Glitter Bomb Tumblers  6. Lauren Conrad Travel Rescue Kit  7. Diptyque Roses Scented Candle  8. Rose Gold Pineapple Shot Glasses  9. Sparkling Holiday Candy Bento Box  10. Winky Lux Flower Balm  11. BECCA Champagne Dream Lip & Highlighter Duo

The Ultimate Holiday Bucket List for 2017

Hi friends! Can you believe we’re already singing Christmas carols again? Personally, this is nothing new for me, as I watch The Santa Clause and Home Alone at least once every few months throughout the year, and I find myself listening to Spotify’s Christmas playlist as early as June. I mean really – is there every really a time too early to listen to Mariah Carey’s Christmas Classic? I THINK NOT!

I know this is a hot button issue for a lot of you, but what do you think about the timing of decorations going up? I typically try to hold off until after Thanksgiving, but this year I couldn’t help myself – I threw the lights up about week before Turkey day. Though I did feel less guilty, considering some of you had yours up as soon as the Halloween candy was put out at 50% off at the Duane Reads, you crazies!

All that said, there’s always so much I want to do each year to get in the spirit, yet I somehow let it all get away from me between the holiday shopping and the Christmas parties and the ABC Family (I refuse to truly refer to them as Freeform) 25 Day’s of Christmas marathons. So this year, I’ve created a bucket list for us to keep track + maybe even provide a little inspo of ideas! I’ve created a printable PDFd version as well, so you can download it for yourself! Click Here to Download 🙂

Check out the list + let me know what you think! And, as always, send me a message with any traditions you love for the holidays that haven’t been included. xo, AJ

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