Wednesday, April 14, 2010

"I Can Has Shoes?" and The Emulation of FitNasti

So yesterday, I decided that retail therapy was the order of the day. Aside from my apartment, the only other places I've seen (or that I feel like I've seen) in the last few weeks have been 1) the church, 2) Sebastian's house, and 3) the gym. The Tube doesn't count.
With that in mind, on my way home from the gym, I made a pit stop at Oxford Street. Window shopping was the order of the day, and to make it all feel marginally more acceptable, I decided to go window shopping for wedding accessories. Much as there's still some degree of angst in my parsimonious soul every time I buy something that isn't strictly necessary, I managed to make my purchases yesterday with the minimum of buyer's remorse. It's not that I ever really wish I could return the items and have the money safely stowed away in my account once more, I'm just cheap and hate spending money. That said, I do have a weakness for shoes, and shoes were precisely what I needed to get for my wedding ensemble, STAT.
With that idea in mind, I ambled in and out of store after store, whether they had shoes or not. I was enjoying the sunshine and the fact that for an hour or so I could indulge in being entirely self-absorbed and vapid. Since shoes are always your friend, no matter how fat you feel, I didn't have to worry about slimming down for the wedding; thoughts of Soviet nationalism policy and the heroisation of Napoleon were far from my mind; the mountain of my flatmate's dirty dishes - a constant source of blood-boiling irritation that may eventually result in his bodily harm at my hands - was, for the moment, forgotten. All that mattered was enjoying my search for The Shoes.
Incidentally, I found them in the first store where I actually took my search seriously. I know - it's almost a cardinal sin of shopping sensibly to buy the first thing you see, but these shoes were it. A low rise, a wedge - not a heel - a tiny peep-toe, and (the Holy Grail of wedding shoes) I can wear them again.
Rejoice! Rejoice! The quest is at an end! I thought for ages that I was being too picky and that I might, in the end, have to settle for some dreaded be-jewelled, be-glittered monstrosity of a strappy sandal with heels that could make even Prince feel like a towering giant. Really, it's the little things that make me happy. Like my other indulgence which is also a practical purchase...another pair of shoes.

I highly endorse Tom's Shoes. For every pair of super cute flats you buy from them, they donate a pair of shoes to a child who doesn't have any. How cool is that!? And, considering that my gold Old Navy flats are well on the way out, and I've worn holes in the toes of the boots I bought at Debenhams this winter, a new pair of shoes to last me through the autumn are well in order. My lovely new purchase just came through the door and (after a brief pause in typing) my feet are in their snuggly and politically-aware embrace.
In a continuing wave of feel-good-ness, I climbed the equivalent of 175 flights of stairs today and ran about 2 miles on top of that. Why? The Dress. And because I haven't done it in nearly a year - back in the good days at Wake Forest when the StairMaster was my close, personal friend. I felt like such a champ when I finished my 50th ascent of the 3.5-flight jumble of stairs down by the canal. One runner passed me on his way up the stairs and asked, "how long have you been doing this now?" I smiled and told him, "well, this last one makes 40!" He smiled and ran away. Another guy was riding bikes with his friend. After the usual polite one-sided flirtation, he waited for his friend to get it together while I descended the stairs. "Oh, coming to join us?" he asked jokingly. But when I smiled and turned back around without stopping to climb the stairs once more, his tone changed. "Oh! She's doing stairs!" He was in disbelief; "she's sick!" Though I was still only halfway through my 50 reps, I felt like I'd earned the massive respect apparent in his voice. That's right: I'm sick.
In my new-found (or re-found) commitment to the stairs and all things gym-tastic, I must give props to my friend Nina and her amazing example. Her blog, FitNasti, which I've mentioned before has been chronicling her progress to being a hard-core figure competitor. Reading Nina's blog helped me remember why I started doing this in the first place. 1) Because I feel so good proving that I can do something like climb 175 flights of stairs. 2) Because once I've put in that hard work, I look good. And I make no apologies for how cocky that sounded.

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