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"All right, I’m ready for my closeup Mr. DeMille."

Before workout.
Before workout.
Wake up, get out of bed, go in shower, shave legs, wash hair, towel off, dry hair, straighten hair, ponytail hair, trim bangs with sideburns clipper, cream, wipe excess moisturiser on visible tattoos, smudgy black eyeliner, mascara wand pointillism, waterproof extra black lashes, squish face up, squish face up, squish face up, appropriately messy. 
Brow gel, lip stain, foundation for cheeks and random zits, body suit contortion session, stretchy Capri pants, shirt…what shirt?  Try on Hello Kitty, no, try on Cobra Kai, no, try on Fangtasia, no, try on EVERY DAY IS WORLD AIDS DAY @ MAC…holey moley…this fits!?!?!?!?!??  Good, raise social consciousness & a MAC plug.  Done.  Obligatory stretch the t-shirt interpretive dance, socks, sneakers, breakfast, nausea, butterflies, hoodie.  Don’t throw up all over yourself.  Ride.  Crystal.
I remember this anxiousness…butterflies and that I may barf all over myself at any given minute, no wait, I can keep it together feeling.  The last time I felt this way was at the in-gate of a horse show.  So why do I feel such nerves today?  Well, because it’s ninja time and there will be a photog from the Times Colonist there to document my session – I hope he wears skinny jeans, a tuque, and a granddad sweater and takes my picture with a Holga..oh, the light leaks!  Maybe if I’m lucky he’ll post my picture on his Instagram.  If only I weighed an Instagram.
That’s why I’m here...on the elliptical, sweating.  Enter Jonathan, lemme just flick up that tension. 
“You’re going to hate me today.”
And gone.
He comes back a few minutes later.
            “You’re going to hate me today.”
            “You said that.”
            “Yes, but you didn’t really react.”
So here’s the deal…I don’t hate him, I hate stairs.  And apparently, I’m running them, and then I’m doing squats with weights up over my head, and then I rest for 30 seconds…and then I do it again…4 more times.  I don’t love much about this exercise because it’s really hard, but what I do love is that I’m getting ‘er done, and I’m improving.  The more difficult it is, the better it is for me - that’s the sort of attitude I adopt in order to get through all this. 
Photographer?  Where is the photographer?  Oh wait, he’s here…and I have unintentional sweaty separated Lydia Deetz from Beetlejuice bangs, but my smoky eyes have not budged…they are still rock solid.  Ha!  I can’t believe Jonathan even questioned the longevity of my maquillage.  Make-up artist vs. personal trainer.  Suzie for the win!      
What is a little girl to do?
And now we’re what?  Or, I should rephrase that, and now I’m doing what exactly?  Then hold on to the railing and do the gorilla-stance-20-pound-dumbbell-lifting-with-your-elbows-in things, awesome, and then something with a ladder (Fire drills?  Search & rescue?  Painting?)...oh, a Jacob’s ladder...I have no idea what that means.  And now I do.  And I firmly believe that it’s against the rules of the Crystal Pool.  It clearly states on a little sign on the wall:  NO SKIPPING IN HALLWAYS.  In-in-out-out is a kind of skipping, no?  Or is it more hopscotch?  Whatever it was, I wasn’t so bad at it.  Yay.  And then push-ups.  Click, CLICK, click.  FYI…it wasn’t a Holga...and he wasn't in a cardigan, much to my disappointment. 

Now on to boxing.  Yayayayyayayaya!  Amazeballs!  I love arms turn to jelly and my body takes a beating (not literally) after a while, but it feels really great to punch things.  As my friend Jen would say, "Punching things is rad."  Insert obvious allusion to pent up aggression and/or frustration here.  But, who cares?  It'll look cool in photos...and that's what's important, right Jonathan?
"A successful workout is what I'm focused on.  Don't worry, you'll get good shots."
The man NEVER loses focus.  

So boxing commences on the heavy bag...and then we go on to some hand to hand shots on the mitts.  This feels amazing.  Muscles that I didn't even know I had are being worked.  Then I learn "hooking."  No, wait, that doesn't sound so good.  Then I lean how to do "hooks."  Wow.  Sweat is running down my face and getting sniffed up into my nose and I can't adjust my shirt because of the giant gloves on my hands...but I don't care.  The photographer is on the ground and the shutter clicks over and over and over.  At this point, I don't even care what I look job is to hit things.  I'm afraid that I am going to look super intense, but I guess that's the point.  This is hard work, and even at my weight, I'm gettin' 'er done!  And, I can't stress this enough...if I can do this, so can you.
After workout.

Then it's over.  

We review a few piccies on the camera briefly...I hop on a machine (elliptical|) to cool down.  The photog talks to Jonathan for a bit, and it's out of our hands.  Hope I look okay in the photographs, and I don't come off as a total idiot in the article.  

Jonathan, sensei, you were right.  It wasn't about putting on a show, it was about being real, working hard, and showing everyone that it's not going to be easy, and that's okay.  If you stay focused and work hard, you'll reach your goal eventually.