A Week of Travel, Organization, Work, and Feng Shui MADness

Life lately has been a little bit of everything; it’s been the good, the bad, the ugly, the exhausted, the energized — and all the things in between.  My instagram feed would detail the below as the highlights, but it hardly captures the ‘all’ that it entails.  So, join me as I head back to the chronicles, and warm the blog back up in tandem with the newly launched website/blog for b:core where you’ll be hearing from me, some of our favorite partners, and of course, our teachers.  We’ve got a lot to say, me especially, so I’m pretty excited to welcome in the hibernation and existential thought producing season that winter is.fuel sweat grow: life lately instagram @valeriemorini

Last week I was in Charlotte for work, which is always a little bit of an adjustment to my personal time and life management style. Somehow I always forget how crazy the traffic has become since I first moved there in 2009, and just how unbelievably convenient life in Charlottesville is with everything falling within a 1 mile radius and 5-10 minute commute – tops.  Running in line with that is just how much I love my #sweatIX compound, and all of the things that keep my life motoring along [almost] effortlessly now that we’ve got all the tacos and coffee that we could handle.

After a full week of all things work, and some mid-week celebrations for the MADabolic CLT 4 year anniversary, I could not have been more ready to head back home — of course with a 10 foot box truck filled with all the favorite things that filled the Charleston MAD apartment for the last 6 months.  For whatever reason, come Saturday morning, my exhaustion turned a corner (or came full circle) and in a post-interval craze I felt compelled to begin what can only be classified as an all-day over[u]haul of MADcville and b:core methods to bring all the happiness and warmth to the spaces, and my sanity. [And this is where I’d like to thank West Elm and HomeGoods for always being there, powering my home decor and nesting addiction, and being ever so clutch in my life – here and everywhere. I love you.]

And here it is, my home away from home, my work-day office, and the #sweatIX think tank where all the decisions are made and grand ideas are launched (or decidedly not).

fuel sweat grow: office juju home decor

fuel sweat grow: Office organization and MADcville

It might not seem like a lot, but it has truly changed my whole world — and while I don’t really go around spouting about feng shui per say, my environment and it’s set up makes the full difference in how productive (and happy) I am.  There are few things I love more than a good scorch and burn of closets and living spaces to make room for organizational bins and everything HomeGoods, so this was probably the best possible way for me to close out a long week.

Oh, and this: FREE coffee being served up outside of Whole Foods on Sunday thanks to Allegro Coffee Company and their #FLXBUS.

fuel sweat grow: Allegro Coffee bus #FLXbus

At b:core we’ve been slowly but surely adding all the things that make it feel the appropriate winter level of warm and welcoming, and over the last few weeks we made a few updates that have majorly contributed to our love affair with the sweeter, softer, and very deceptively [not so] gentle side of the building and it looks a little like this:

fuel sweat grow: b:core methods cville barre studio and core life

Our teacher photos are hung, happy, and will soon all come to life with some more never been seen shots as we release our teacher features on the blog.
fuel sweat grow: b:core methods teacher photos

Just to add a little to the ‘everything’ theme of the weekend, we also went to Red Shoe Cville’s AMAZING Rocktoberfest at the IX art park on Saturday Night, and it was so. much. fun.  Next year we are certainly all going to rock out at this event, so stay tuned for my full recap and launch of the really amazing opportunities and experiences that are about to come to life through this partnership.

fuel sweat grow: Red Shoe Cville ROCKTOBERFEST

So now, I’m just slowly recovering from a week of the non-stop in a city so far from the quiet convenience of this small Cville town, and I’m doing it from my newly happy-fied office in this place that owns my heart at it’s core.

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Almond Milk Lattes, StrengthsFinder & Earned Weeks

There are good weeks and bad weeks, long tough weeks and the weeks that pass in what feels like the blink of an eye. It’s always a gamble, and the more you push to achieve, the more concerning the odds are.

And then, like hope at the end of a long winter, there are the earned weeks — the weeks that can only be found at the end of the most challenging stretches of time-sleep-and-sanity deprivation.  They make all the struggles seem worthwhile, even if just barely, and everything begins to fall together.

This week was definitely an earned week, and in addition to all the work and long hours that made it happen, I’d also like to thank the newest sponsor to my productivity: Milli Joe.

Fuel sweat grow: Milli Joe

Milli Joe is a locally owned coffee and gelato (+ cheese and chocolate) shop right off the downtown mall in Charlottesville.  While all of that’s awesome, this town is hyper-local so everyone needs a little something extra to distinguish themselves, and this week I found out what Milli Joe had to hook me in – fresh all-natural almond milk made in house and hand crafted each morning into the latte that kept me alive.

Fuel sweat grow: almond milk latte

Today is day 10 of 28toLife and it’s so true for me that the most challenging part is giving up coffee the way I love it — a little sweet and a lot creamy — so this was the perfect replacement.  They are just shy of $5/cup, but that’s pretty on-par with starbucks pricing, and has none of the crap, so that’s an immediate bonus.  Add on that my current alcohol costs are hovering around zero, and it doesn’t seem so terrible.

And if that wasn’t enough, they were awesome enough to reserve us a sweet corner section for our MADabolic Cville team StrengthsFinder development night last Thursday.

Fuel Sweat Grow: MADabolic StrengthsFinder

I love personal and professional development, especially exploring the strengths, motivations, and goals of the people surrounding me, in both work and life.  A few years ago I was introduced to the StrengthsFinder test when I was working with lululemon, and revisited it again just recently with my team at Wells. It’s still dead on for me, and continues to blow me away with it’s accuracy across the board.

When we were in Charleston last month the rest of our MADass partnership group took the test, and it only seemed appropriate (and more exciting) to enroll our trainers in Charlottesville as well.  In addition to giving insight into each individual, what makes them tick, and what strengths we embody as a team, the book also digs deeper into how best to manage individuals based on their top strength which is so important to consider.

It was a great forum for team bonding, conversation, and development, while also serving as a great tangent off of our normal fitness focus.

Fuel Sweat Grow: MADabolic StrengthsFinder

Fuel Sweat Grow: MADabolic Cville StrengthsFinder

Fuel Sweat Grow: MADabolic Cville StrengthsFinder

Fuel Sweat Grow: MADabolic Cville

The most important part of any business is leadership — which is only a strong concept when it goes beyond who is ‘in charge’ and extends to the sum of all the parts.  Our trainers are awesome people and give our business the energy and life it requires (and our clients demand) everyday, so it’s our responsibility to continue to develop and invest in them to continue their growth – and in turn, ours.

I’ve been lucky enough to know, and work for, more than my fair share of awesome leaders who viewed themselves as small pieces of the whole– and my fair share of those who touted themselves as leaders without what I would call any earned or legitimate experience (or respect) in business.   Both experiences had value, but the former was of course was the one that equipped me with the inspiration, drive, and sense of self that really took my abilities (‘potential’) and pushed me to achieve more than I knew I could.

In short (or, actually, long), last week I had some amazing fresh almond milk lattes which inspired my strengths, reinforced my goals, and supported the foundational steps for our team and business growth.

Add on to all of that my renewed sense of accomplishment that is directly rooted in a new style of notebook, and you’ll understand how this week became an earned week – the first sweet trace of spring at the end of a long winter.

fuel sweat grow: notebook organization levenger

 

And that’s just what happened when I wasn’t figuring out meals for 28toLife and sweating next to the best of them at MADabolic Cville.   Thanks for the good week, Charlottesville. I miss you already.