Monthly Archives: June 2015

Seeing Signs (or Is This Denial?)

It’s now been almost 2 months since my grandpa passed away. And I’m still questioning if I’ve accepted it. It doesn’t feel real to me still. And maybe that’s because I only visited my grandparents a couple of times a year and I’ve only been down to see my grandma twice since it happened. I’m thinking that it might not feel real until Thanksgiving when I think his absence will really be felt.

I’ve been lucky where very few people who I love have passed away. But it usually feels real right away. But then again, many times it’s been after a long illness and I knew that this was coming.

When Kip (my acting teacher) passed away, it was after about a year in the hospital. Every so often we thought that he was getting better and going to come home, but then something would happen and he would take a turn for the worst. This went on for so many months that I wondered if he would just live for several years in the hospital (we tried to make it seem homey for him and decorate for the holidays). In the end, he decided to end all life-extending measures and we were all given a chance to say goodbye. When I went, he wasn’t really conscious, but there was music playing in the room and every so often he would smile at that. I was there for maybe 30 minutes telling him how much I loved him and then said goodbye. He passed away a day or two later.

With my friend Keri, that was another long illness. While I never really said goodbye to Keri, I still knew that this was coming. And honestly, I doubt she would have allowed me to say goodbye to her. She was always so positive and wouldn’t want to have me think about not seeing her again.

The one death that I’ve experienced that was unexpected in the past was my Great Aunt Shirley. She was like my grandma on my dad’s side. Her health was always a little poor, but when I got the call that she passed away, I was shocked. I never got to say goodbye to her and I regret that I didn’t have a phone call with her closer to her death (our last phone call was about 2 months before she passed).

I’m not hoping to necessarily feel sad about my grandpa’s death. He and I had a very complicated relationship and I understand why my emotions might not be what people expect. But some sense of closure might be nice.

I may have gotten a bit of that this past weekend. I was at the grocery store picking up a few things. They had a display of Coke bottles near the check out. I haven’t had soda in years so I still don’t know why I looked at it. But when I did, in the center was my grandpa’s name.

A Sign?

I’m not sure what this sign meant, but it was definitely something. And for some reason, it gave me a bit more peace with everything.

Short and Sweet Workout Week (or Taking It A Bit Easy)

I “only” got 3 workouts in this week (I count my weeks from Sunday-Saturday). I was able to do my usual Monday/Wednesday/Friday workouts and that was all that I did.

I put only in parenthesis because that’s a pretty darn impressive amount. I remember when I started my partnership with Orangetheory pretty much exactly a year ago and was so scared to do 3 workouts in a week. Now that seems like a break to me!

I would have done more workouts this week, but I didn’t want to do one the Sunday that started the week because I was recovering from my beach workout (and doing that would have made it 4 workouts in a row). And I didn’t go on Saturday because I had something else I had scheduled (more on that later this week). And doing workouts on Tuesdays and Thursdays are still a bit tough for me when I’m doing my regular workout schedule because that means that I will have 3 workout days in a row. I can do 3 workouts in a row if I have to, but I’d rather not at this point.

I’m still continuing to test myself on the treadmill and see what my limits really are. I’m getting quite comfortable at 3.5 miles an hour on the treadmill. And when I’m in push paces, I’m almost always going up to 3.6 or 3.7 miles an hour. For some reason though, those faster speeds are much more difficult for me at my “flat road” of 4% incline than they are at 8 or 10% incline. I’m hoping by the end of summer that I can start doing 3.6 miles an hour at 4% incline on a more regular basis. I still have a goal time in my head for my next 5K and to do that time I need to be at 3.7 during my workouts. My 5Ks seem to be faster than my treadmill times (maybe adrenaline or maybe because it’s a real flat road) so if I’m doing 3.7 miles per hour at my workout I know I can hit my goal time.

I’ve also made some significant progress on the rowing machine this week. I don’t know what clicked for me, but I’m finally doing what the minimum wattage should be (before I was at maybe 70% of what the minimum should be).

I also got to work out next to one of the owners, Paul, during my Wednesday workout. He made a comment about how much improvement he’s seen in me since my first workout. He remembers how I could barely walk after that first workout. And now I’m kicking some serious butt in class!

It’s nice to have someone notice improvement in me. I still don’t think it’s showing in my body (and it’s definitely not showing on the scale). So to have someone point out improvement or progress to me unprompted proves that even though I’m not seeing it in the way that I’d like to.

Having a 3 workout week was a nice break for me, but this coming week is going to be a crazy one. I haven’t decided for sure yet, but it may end up being my very first 5 workout week! And now that I’ve said that publicly on here, I feel like I have to do it!

Feeling Secure (or Not Letting Past Jobs Make Me Feel Bad Anymore)

I’ve always had confidence issues with my day jobs. I’m not quite sure what set it off to begin with. The after school jobs I had in high school and college were fine (although my high school job did expose me to TB but that wasn’t too much of an issue). And while it’s always tough to find good day jobs, I’ve found several that work out for me.

But for as long as I can remember, if a boss at a day job wanted to talk to me, I was so sure that I was being let go or I did something horribly wrong.

I have had some horrible day jobs, but nothing that made them horrible was something that I brought on to myself. I had one boss who was very verbally abusive and threatened me when I questioned something that turned out to be insurance fraud. I left that job after my boss said that I really should die (and sadly, I never reported anything because I didn’t know that I should). I’ve had bosses who were awesome for a week or two, but then required me to take a class at a place of worship for me to continue working for them. I’m fine with continuing education, but I don’t want to be forced to take the class inside of someone’s church. And I’ve had bosses who were just outright mean to me and talked about my weight loudly behind my back so I could hear it.

Even though I didn’t deserve any of those things to happen to me, somehow I have it in my head that it is my fault. I’ve compared myself to a puppy who came from an abusive situation and is now in a good home. I don’t know how to react with good things and I’m always assuming that I’m doing something bad.

I’ve been pretty lucky with my box office job. Even though I work alone in my house, I do get feedback from time to time. My manager lets me know when things are going well and when I have to email different locations about things, I do get praised for taking initiative.

With my new job, it’s a little more difficult and easier at the same time. It’s easier because I used to work for this boss before and she knows my confidence issues with work. She’s happy to reassure me that I’m doing the right thing and knows that I’m very paranoid about it all. But it’s more difficult because there is less feedback because so much of this job is creating the procedure to get things done. So there’s really no way to know if I’m doing things “right” or not until we figure out that it isn’t working.

Because I’m finally feeling more comfortable that I’m not going to be fired tomorrow at either of my day jobs (seriously, I’ve felt like that every day for forever), I’m trying to readjust my feelings and thoughts about day jobs. This is not just a situation where I’m working because I need a job. The companies I work for need me too. I’m a valuable employee and not disposable (although I have had people in the past say that I am always going to be a disposable employee).

Hopefully by rebuilding my day job confidence I can just do better in my work and be able to focus at the tasks I need to get done and not have to worry about if I will still be working tomorrow.

Feeling New Aches And Pains (or Working On More Pain Management)

I’ve gotten pretty decent at managing my hip pain. I’ve been dealing with this for almost 10 years now (this coming October will mark 10 years since I collapsed in an airport and the pain started). I have a routine with painkillers and while that has changed a bit because I need to limit narcotic painkillers on Vyvanse, I’m still pretty on top of things.

But with all my workouts plus other things in life, I’m having more pain and having trouble managing it (which in turn makes my hip pain feel worse). Some of the pain is from things that I know I need to deal with. My muscles feel sore after workouts, especially when I’m pushing it with the weights I’m using. Right now, I’m dealing with a lot of shoulder pain in my right shoulder. I’m guessing it’s a combination of my workouts and maybe sleeping weirdly.

I’m also dealing with foot/toe/ankle pain. I’m guessing that that is partly due to the increased speed on the treadmill during my workouts. But it’s also probably due to me marching in place every day to make sure I get my steps in. Walking for hours at Disneyland didn’t help that either.

The rest of the pain that I’m experiencing is stuff that I know is temporary (and somewhat out of my control). Mainly sunburn soreness and feeling sickly (which makes me achy) because of the heat wave.

I’m still working on getting my mind to think about pain differently. It’s not something to stop me and make me take a break all the time. Of course, sometimes that’s exactly what pain means. But I used to always stop when I have any pain and that would prevent me from attempting to work out.

I’m not giving myself that excuse anymore. I’ve become the master at modifying my workouts. And I just have to keep that mindset for other things. Just because my feet are sore, that doesn’t mean that I can’t get my 10,000 steps done. It just means that it might take me all day instead of being able to get them all done in the morning (and then working toward 15,000 for the rest of the day). It might hurt to type with my shoulder pain (it’s weird, but true) but I have to push through it and try to take typing breaks when I can.

I know that pain is temporary, and I just have to keep telling myself that. And most of the pain I’m feeling is because I’m working so hard on improving myself and soon I won’t feel the pain anymore with similar activities.

Disneyland Bucket List (or One Last Visit Before The Summer Blackout)

I went to Disneyland on Monday with my friend June. She and I both have annual passes that are blacked out for the summer starting at the end of this week, so we wanted to get in one more Disney adventure before we can’t go back until the end of August.

We got down to the parks around 1pm (we both had workout classes that we went to in the morning), and we started things off right away.

Our first stop was at the Haunted Mansion. The Hatbox Ghost was recently brought back to the Haunted Mansion after disappearing soon after the ride opened in the 60’s. I hadn’t had a chance to see him yet, so I was beyond excited to check him out!

As we were getting close to his spot in the ride, I mentioned to June that it would be so amazing if the ride broke down or stopped right in front of him so we could check him out even longer. And about 3 feet before we got to him the ride did break! But it was just before we would have been able to see him, so our view was of the bride instead of the Hatbox Ghost.

Haunted Mansion

Once the ride got started again we finally saw the Hatbox Ghost, and he was totally worth it! I wish we could have ridden that ride over and over again, but we had more Disneyland things to get done.

Next was a stop to get my favorite treat: Dole Whips!

Dole Whip

It was the perfect refreshing treat on such a hot day and we were able to find a bench in the shade to relax on while we ate.

After our snack, it was time for another ride that was recently updated. The Matterhorn!


I don’t love the Matterhorn because of how bumpy it is and how it hurts my hips while riding it, but they just added a new animatronic on the ride and I had to see how it looked. I had seen some videos online so I had an idea of what to expect, but June hadn’t and she got a good scare on the ride. And since I decided not to put my hands up like usual, I was able to brace myself a bit better and only hurt a little after the ride.

After those two upgraded rides in Disneyland, we headed over to California Adventure to see the newly upgraded Soarin’ Over California. They had upgraded the screens and cleaned up the film (which desperately needed it). The upgraded ride looked very nice, but we did have a bit of a scare at the beginning of the ride. When the ride was moving up into the screen area, our seats jerked forward and we all had a little moment of panic. But the ride was smooth sailing after then.

After those 3 rides, we had checked off all the rides that we really wanted to do before we were blacked out for the summer. So we just did some fun rides after that. We checked out The Little Mermaid (mainly for the air conditioning) and then watched the Aladdin show (again for the air conditioning).

Aladdin Show

Our final ride for the day was Tower Of Terror. We tried to do a silly yawning photo this time and I think it came out pretty cute.

tower Of Terror

After those rides, we walked through Downtown Disney to the Disneyland Hotel for dinner. We got dinner somewhere where I’ve never gone before, Trader Sams!

Trader Sams

They don’t have a huge food menu, but I got a really delicious pork sandwich. June got a fun drink (that came with the zombie mug that she got to take home) but I was just drinking water.

After our fun dinner, we did a couple of silly things around the parks like take advantage of the fun photo ops.

Bear Photo Scaling Matterhorn

And take photos in front of the decorated castle.

Disneyland Castle

And finally a little bit of shopping. We found this ceramic Dole Whip and I knew I had to have it!

Ceramic Dole Whip

And since it was getting close to the fireworks time and there were a couple of spaces right in front of the castle, we decided to suck it up and wait about 2 hours for the new fireworks show.

We got a pretty awesome spot to watch from. Where we were, you were required to stay seated, so that was almost better than having to stand and watch (and hope that you aren’t behind a really tall person). The new show has lots of cool projections on different spots in the park like the castle, the Matterhorn mountain, Main Street, and It’s A Small World.

Lion King Fireworks

Sorry for the random Cast Member in my photos. He was there the entire time making sure that nobody stood up or went under the rope. The fireworks were a bit shorter than I expected, but I’m glad that we waited it out. I rarely do that and when I do, I usually am much farther back. So being almost right in front of the castle was a real treat for me!

It was also a great opportunity to take a castle picture at night with nobody behind me in the photo.

Diamond Celebration

After the fireworks, it was time for us to head home (I had to work the next morning). The funny thing was that it took us longer to walk from the fireworks spot, get a tram, and get to my car than it did for us to make the entire drive home!

And as soon as I got home, I found my Dole Whip a place in my living room to live.

Dole Whip In My House

Both June and I kept saying on the drive home how perfect this Disneyland day was. We got everything done that we wanted to and we really maximized the air conditioning opportunities and stayed out of the heat and sun for a good chunk of our time there.

I’m sad that I can’t go back until the end of August because of my blackout dates. Especially because the Peter Pan ride is supposed to open in a week! I have to wait it out for my time to go back. But June and I are already planning our return to Disneyland in August and hoping that it will be just as epic as this visit was!

Workout On The Beach (or Meeting The TIU Trainers)

A little while ago, I saw an event on Facebook for the Summer Shape Up that Shape Magazine was doing in Hermosa Beach. The event seemed pretty cool on its own. But when I saw that Katrina and Karena, the trainers who created Tone It Up, were teaching 2 different workout classes, I knew I had to go!

I really wanted to go to a bunch of classes (included both of the Tone It Up ones), but due to my work schedule, I was only able to make it for the final class of the event which was the second Tone It Up workout.

I drove down to Hermosa Beach right after my work shift ended. It was a gorgeous Saturday at the beach, so of course parking was very difficult to find. I searched for about 90 minutes before I managed to find a space. But the space I found was in the shade and less than a block from the event space.

Hermosa Beach Summer Shape Up

I got checked it really quickly and got my wristband for my class. Then I went in search for some of my TIU friends. I found them about 10 minutes later in line for the meet and greet with Katrina and Karena. My meet and greet time was after my class, so I stood off to the side while my friends did the meet and greets and took some photos for them.

Since everyone else had just finished a workout in the hot sun, they all wanted to get something refreshing to eat before the next class. So a bunch of us walked a few blocks away to a juice bar where we got some really delicious smoothies. And by the time we all finished our drinks, it was time to head back over to the workout area to line up for our class.

We ended up being toward the back of the line, but we were able to find spaces to put our things down almost dead center of the workout space.


I liked being at the back because I didn’t feel too claustrophobic. But as one of my TIU friends mentioned, being at the back meant while we did squat work that everyone on the pathway behind us were looking at our butts.

I really tried my best with the workout. A lot of things were things that I couldn’t do because of my hips, but I made my own modifications. Also, the sun was very strong and I was sweating like crazy and feeling a little sick from the heat. But even with those issues, I feel like a got a very nice workout in.

And Katrina and Karena were so fun teaching the class! They had great energy and were very encouraging of all of us. It’s one thing doing workout videos that they have posted online, but to do one in person is a whole other thing!

After the workout was done, those of us who didn’t do the earlier meet and greet (or who did the earlier one and wanted to do the second one) lined up. Again, we were toward the back of the line, but it worked to our advantage.

Katrina and Karena

When it was my turn, I got to tell Katrina and Karena about my blog and how I blog about my fitness journey. They seemed to love the name of my blog and said that they wanted to check it out. There were professional photos taken as well, but since I haven’t gotten them yet I just have the photo that my TIU friend took for me.

Katrina and Karena

After my turn was over, I was chatting with some people right next to the meet and greet area. One of the people in the group is the boyfriend of one of the trainers and he was very nice. We chatted about Disneyland a bit. Since I was toward the end of the line, Katrina and Karena finished the meet and greets while I was still standing there. And they came over to me to confirm the name of my blog so they could check it out. I gave them one of my cards so they could have that as a reminder (Hi Katrina and Karena if you are reading this!).

After that, it was time for me to head home. I had a bunch of stuff I needed to get done. So as much as I wanted to turn the afternoon into a beach day (I do keep an emergency beach kit in my car), I had to make the drive home.

As soon as I got home, I checked out the swag bag that Shape gave us.

Swag Bag

It is pretty awesome! I’m really looking forward to checking out the workout DVDs and trying Shakeology again (last time I tried, it made me very sick).

The only negative to the entire adventure was that despite putting sunscreen on and reapplying a few times while I was outside, I still ended up looking like this.


Definitely not as bad as my last bad burn, but I hate knowing that I did damage to my skin. I’m not sure why I’m burning easier than I have in the past, but I’m going to see my dermatologist at the end of summer for a mole check (there are a couple that have been watched for a couple of years) and see if there is something I can do to help prevent this (other than staying out of the sun completely or being totally covered up).

I’m so glad that I had a chance to do the workout with Katrina and Karena. Not only was it a fun workout, I got to have a fun adventure and see my TIU friends. It looks like this event is an annual one, and I hope that Tone It Up is a part of it again next year!

Keep Pushing (or Why Was I So Scared Before?)

This past week of workouts was almost like a breakthrough for me. I wrote about how last week I finally got above 3.4 miles an hour on the treadmill. That was so huge for me. For so long I felt stuck there (even though I wasn’t at that speed for a very long time) and 3.5 miles an hour seemed so out of my reach.

After doing it on the treadmill the week before, I decided to try to continue my progress. And I was able to almost always be at 3.5 miles an hour on the treadmill (except for when we were supposed to walk after an all-out pace). Not only did I do that, I was occasionally going to 3.6 miles an hour.

My issue in the past was getting to the orange zone during the push paces. I was usually at 10% incline because if I wasn’t that steep my heart rate wouldn’t get high enough. Now that I can play around with the speed on the treadmill a bit more, I’m able to get into the orange zone at 8 or 9% incline (usually at the beginning of the workout I have to do 10% just to get my heart rate to get up at first).

3.5 or 3.6 miles an hour on the treadmill isn’t easy, but it’s definitely doable. I don’t know why I was so worried about it in the past. I honestly think I could have gone to 3.5 miles an hour at least a month ago. But there was something about that number that terrified me. And now that I’ve proven to myself that I am able to do it, I feel much more comfortable increasing my speed throughout my workout. I’d love to eventually be at 4.0 miles an hour so I would feel comfortable doing a race at Disneyland (they have pretty strict time restrictions on their races), so with the progress I’ve made so far, I’m almost half way to that goal!

I also did another thing that scared me in my workouts last week. With all my hip issues, I have a lot of balance issues as well. So for core strength work that involves balance, I usually get a modification to do instead. There are several things that I still can’t do (step ups on the bench are almost impossible because my hips don’t want to bend that much), but I’m trying to do more things that feel a bit safer to me.

On Friday’s workout, one of the strength movements was doing squats on the BOSU (flat side down). I’ve done those in the past, but only before my hip surgery when my balance was a bit more normal. Since then, I’ve avoided most balance things on the BOSU because there is a lot of risk for me to fall off and hurt myself. But I was at the strength station near the wall so I moved my BOSU close to the wall so I could steady myself on that.

It took me awhile once I got on the BOSU to get my balance, but after about 15 seconds or so, I was able to take my hand off the wall and do a couple of squats while standing on the BOSU. We were supposed to do 20 and I broke it up into smaller segments. After about 5 I would put my hand on the wall again to balance myself before moving on.

But even though I had to do the 20 squats in smaller chunks, I still did all of my squats on the BOSU that day. My hips were killing me afterwards, but it was worth it!

Beyond my workout victories, I also had some fun moments in my workout week. About a week ago, I decided to order a cute Orangetheory shirt that I saw online. I ordered it in the largest size that they had and it arrived this week.

Eat Sleep OTF

It’s a little small for me, but not so small that it’s discouraging. So hopefully I can wear this for a workout soon (maybe for the workout closest to my birthday!).

The other super fun part of my workout week was having two of my favorite trainers, Bruce and Lal, participate in JZ’s class on Wednesday. Sadly, they couldn’t be on treadmills next to me (since they have to wait until the class starts to see if there will be room for them in the class), but it’s still nice to have them there supporting and encouraging me.

Of course, I made them take a post-workout photo with me.

Bruce and Lal

Now that I appear to have broken the 3.4 miles an hour boundary that was in my head, I’m really getting excited to see what new things I can accomplish on the treadmill. I’ve got a 5K coming up in November and I’m looking at some speed training schedules online to see if there is one that would work well with my Orangetheory workouts. If I can keep this all up, there’s no doubt in my mind that in November I will be blogging about yet another PR!

Update On My Checklist (or Working On Being Happy)

At my last appointment with my therapist, he wanted me to make a happiness checklist. On that list, I was supposed to track 10 things that make me happy and check off if I did one each day.

I don’t know if he really expected me to make a checklist and check off things every day, but I have been doing just that. And I’m beyond the half way point so I figured I should update you all on how I’m doing.

Happiness Checklist

There are a few things that I pretty much do every day without fail. Every day I get 10,000 steps in and I read. Those are pretty easy for me to get done since I make sure to do my 10,000 steps every day (those Fitbit challenges really help me!) and I can’t imagine going to bed without reading. Honestly, I would read more if I could but I don’t have the time. I also blog almost every day as well as workout most days of the week, so those columns have a bunch of check marks on them as well.

Where I’m not doing as many of my happy things seem to be the social things. They are the outings, meeting friends and family, or having a meal out. I’m working on trying to do more of those things, but sometimes once I’m done with work and going to Orangetheory, I just want to put on my PJs and be lazy in my house for the evening. But on the evenings I’m not working out, I really am making more of an effort to be social when I can.

I’ve also got seeing movies on my list. This is something that I love but I don’t seem to do often enough (at least often enough for me). I did go see “Jurassic World” this week by myself and had a great time. It was a really fun movie. The only negative were the people who decided to bring their toddlers in the movie and didn’t seem to shush them (or think it was inappropriate to bring a toddler to that movie). But beyond those little annoyances, that was a fun afternoon out.

The acting column on my happiness checklist is a little empty. I chose to only mark it off if I had an audition or an actor related event. But I do do tasks related to acting every day (like self-submitting or research). I just figured I’d only count it if it was more than something I could do alone in my house.

I’ve got just about a month before my next meeting with my therapist. I will be bringing in my checklists for him to look at. Mainly because I think he will be impressed that I actually did the homework he gave me for 90 days (although my appointment is actually on day 89). But I also really am trying to take my appointments with my therapist seriously. I’m trying to not just be there to get the medication. That might have been the reason I started, but that doesn’t have to be my motivation for continuing.

Workout Clothes Addict (or Didn’t I Used To Complain About Workout Clothes?)

I’ve talked about my love/hate relationship with workout clothes on here before. I’m still super annoyed that a majority of workout clothes do not come in my size (or even close to my size). I’m always seeing really cute workout clothes and they claim they come in larger sizes. But more often than not, those “larger” sizes are up to size 12.

That’s just stupid.

Fortunately, Old Navy still continues to make workout clothes in my size. And they are getting more and more options for workout clothes. So my workout clothes collection is getting pretty decent.

Workout Clothes

And of course, Old Navy was doing a pretty awesome online sale over the weekend so I ordered a bunch of new workout clothes. I’m trying to find more bottoms that are something other than black. I do have one pair of printed workout capris, but I don’t have a top that goes with it. So I also ordered a plain white workout top so that I can wear that with the patterned pants.

I have had to expand my workout clothes collection in the past because I was working out more and more. When I only had 3 pairs of workout pants, I couldn’t work out 4 days in a week unless I wanted to do an extra load of laundry in the middle of the week.

I’m also finding that I’m wearing my workout clothes more often than “normal” clothes. On the days that I work out in the afternoon, I wear my workout clothes for the day. When I wake up, I put on my workout clothes and wear those while I’m working. Then I go and work out and when I get home I shower and put on pajamas for the evening. So I don’t wear regular clothes then. And on my off days, I’m usually in workout pants and a shirt because I’m just going to be sitting at my desk for several hours. Also, being in workout clothes makes it easier for me to get in my steps for the day (usually done while standing in front of the tv or computer).

I never thought I’d be the person who lives in yoga pants, but I really am becoming that person. Some of it is due to laziness, but honestly I feel more confident and happier in my workout clothes (or at least my workout capris/pants) than I do in my regular clothes. I know that this should be a bad thing, but my workout clothes don’t make me feel like I have fat or skinny days in my clothes. I know that some people say you shouldn’t live in stretchy pants because you won’t notice when you gain weight, but for me I need to not notice those little changes. It can be due to so many things and I don’t want a weight gain due to salt or something make me think I’ve screwed it all up and then eat a bunch of food. These pants almost help me feel a sense of normalcy.

Obviously there are plenty of times I have to get dressed in real clothes and go out into the world. But I really don’t see a problem with being in clothes that are both comfortable and make me feel good. Soon, my workout clothes will overtake regular clothes in my closet, and I’m good with that.

Finally Going To Staples Center (or VIP Status)

I’ve lived in LA for almost 14 years now. I’ve done a lot of stuff in those 14 years of living here. But until this past weekend, I had never been inside of the Staples Center. I’ve been near it and have gone to LA Live and the Convention Center. But I’ve just never seen anything at Staples Center.

So when one of my TIU friends shared online that they had box seats for a Sparks game, I jumped at the chance to go! My friend had gotten the seats through her job, she’s an assistant at CAA (for those of you not familiar with CAA, they are an agency that reps a lot of actors, musicians, and athletes). So I knew that the seats would be pretty awesome!

I took the light rail to Staples and my friend met me near by so we could drive in together (we didn’t want to not be able to find each other). We got there early since we were told that the doors opened 90 minutes prior to the game and lined up outside.

Staples Center

We kind of got the run-around by several employees of Staples Center. We switched where we had lined up 4 different times. And then we were told to finally go back to where we started, but we weren’t allowed in. They ended up opening the doors a little less than an hour prior to the start time and we headed up to the A-Level Suites.

There, we met Cruz, who honestly was the best employee at Staples Center! She gave us a little tour of the suite level and some of the different places we could hang out (sadly, many of them were closed since the game wasn’t that crowded). Then she led us to the suite we’d be sitting in. And I was shocked by how amazing our view was.

CAA Suite

We were pretty much dead center with a perfect view of the court! And we had the option to sit in regular style seats, at the bar seating, or a couple of different couches (there was a tv near the couches so you could still watch the game).

VIP Suite 2 VIP Suite

My friend and I were the only ones in the suite at that point and we knew it wouldn’t be catered, so we went in search of lunch. We ended up going back down to the main entrance where there was a CPK. We got a pizza and salad to split and went back up to the suite.

Eventually, a few other people joined us in the suite, but in total there were only 8 of us and I think the suite is meant for about 20.

Besides being my first time at Staples Center, this was my first professional basketball game ever! I have been to multiple college basketball games but never a professional one before. So I was pretty excited to watch the game. I’m still not 100% sure on all the different penalties, but I still enjoyed it.

Sparks Game

Plus, we got some pretty awesome hats as a giveaway for attending the game. We  had to search for the hats because they didn’t give them out at the VIP entrance, so we went to the main entrance and found some hats for us.

We Are LA

I think we looked pretty good in the hats.

With Catherine

In the end, the LA Sparks lost, but they played a good game and were winning until the last few minutes.

I had such an amazing time at the game. It was so nice being in the suite and having space without feeling like I was in the middle of the crowd. We were able to stand up and walk around if we wanted to and not worry about getting around other seats or blocking other’s views. I joked to my friend that by getting to sit there really did ruin me for any other events that I might go to in the future.

I’m so glad that I was able to go to this game with a friend, plus I got to know my new friend better. We had a really nice chat about the entertainment industry and her job at CAA.

This has motivated me to start making a list of other LA things that I haven’t done yet. I don’t know how many things I haven’t done yet, but I’m going to start looking around at lists of things to do in LA and see what I’ve missed that I really want to do (I think I’ll skip those bus tours of celebrity houses).

Maybe I’ll be able to create a nice LA bucket list that I can start checking things off of!