Friday, September 3, 2010

What we can learn from T.I.

Well its been all over the news about the rapper TI getting arrested. I got the urge to write about him & his "alleged" (thanks Law School) situation. Click Here for the CNN version of what went down. My initial post was going to be about this article I read on CNN entitled She Drops 100 pounds and Gains a New World but I will somehow pull them together for you in a neat Tiffany's & Co. bow!

I gave TI a shout out in my Triathlon post because I talked about how his song 'Bring Em Out' was in heavy rotation during the 3rd part of my Tri (the 3.4 mile run). I am not gonna lie, I like TI! In fact one of the highlights at the Essence Music Festival was when he made a surprise appearance with Mary J Blige. Not too much of a surprise to me because we saw him at our hotel headed to the show but when he took the stage I was hyped! I like the verse on the new Mary J song Gimme That Good Love! Anyway what can be learned in terms of a healthier lifestyle and his situation.

1. He is talented and has accomplished some major goals: A few Grammy awards, a good actor with great movie credits...I mean opposite Denzel even, philanthropic efforts, and best of all stardom. I often say everyone has a vice if you are lucky its only one. You have to identify your "vice." What bad habit do you have that you struggle with? I talked last time about appreciating my new level of awareness when it comes to food. As I became more aware of my vice (over eating) I had to take steps to actively avoid & combat it. A word to the wise is sufficient my grandmother would say.... Its a shame to lose progress based on an old bad habit. That's the worst. There's a saying from church I always liked "The devil doesn't have any new tricks." If you know your weak spots work on them. No one is perfect or will ever be but we should strive to improve but when you have the same tests coming back over and over its time to take a time out and make some serious decisions.

2. Do the right thing even when you think no one is watching. I mean you are in your car... yadda yadda... its LA yadda yadda...tinted windows....yadda yadda... and maybe its the lawyer in me but dude almost every major criminal law case started with " during a routine traffic stop!" And once Sniffy the Dog (as my Con Crim Pro professor called him) shows up; its a wrap. Needless to say if the "faint hint of..." *insert fave smelly drug or substance hear* is present well its open season on you & your car. This isn't a judgement on the police; its their duty but seriously do I need to start a Criminal Law 101 class for rappers & athletes?! *writing down on my to do list*

Bringing it point.... so what if no one else knows? You know how much you are eating (if you are REALLY trying to be on top of your game) or how much or how little you are exercising and/or how HARD you are/ or are not exercising? Later for all this talking on my blog and to friends if at the end of the day I don't see results its because I am just talking a good game and not putting any action behind it. When you make a "plan" like I am on parole and will not do these things Judge because I don't want to go back to jail...How about you stick to it! Or in my case you want to lose 50 pounds by May to look fab in your pics when you go to Spain & Rome well stick to your plan. Its a reminder for me is all. I have not worked out since the Iron Girl that was 12 days ago...almost 2 weeks. And I planned on it but didn't follow through...I actually dodged my trainer and bueno! I'll weigh in tomorrow and see what the happ's is and go from there! But accountability even when you think) no one else is watching is key! Mister's Dad wants to take us out to dinner tonight so I'll have to put my mind where my mouth is and make the right choices because I face the scale tomorrow! :-) Good reminder :-)

3. Surround yourself with the right people. They are married but both are dead wrong (allegedly) and Imma say 1. the person on parole who just got out of jail is wrong & 2. the person who says they love the person who just got out of jail is wrong.

Support in doing the right thing is important in one's life and I just can't imagine my recent husband getting out of jail and is on parole and is driving while black (yall know that's a real term!) in LA!!!! And I am just gonna ride along & puff along or watch him do it. Not on my watch. Now I dunno what went down maybe she tried or maybe he tried but it was a big ole FAIL. But same goes for over eating and not exercising. I can't be with someone who I am a bad influence on or vice versa. Not just romantically either but friendships as well. I have friends that we only went out to eat. I had to change that up...some came along some didn't. I don't know what they were thinking. I will hope for the best for both of them. I suspect she'll "take the charge" for her man and get probation. He'll probably get off with a warning. The Judge who thus far has bent over backwards to help reform him (MTV show, early release, community service, half way house...) Time will tell worst case she can use her spousal privilege or he can and not testify against the other. Anyway a big ole unnecessary mess! But the lesson for me was surround yourself with the right people. Some friends have gone others have come in their place and maybe that was for the best for my journey. I'll keep working on that because truth be told there may be others that have over stayed their welcome in my new happy home! No judgement, no fuss just like The Word says there is a time & a season for EVERYTHING under the sun.

As my idol Oprah would say....One Thing I Know For Sure....Life is too short for unhappiness.

Which brings me to my initial post about the CNN article I posted above (She Drops 100 Pounds) I thought it was going to be a great motivational piece about an overweight woman who loses 100 pounds and finds out how great she feels and how wonderful life is... Ehhhh no not exactly. She (AND MANY CONGRATS TO HER) likened her experience of losing 100 pounds to Eddie Murphy on Saturday Night Live where he goes "undercover" as a white man and finds a whole "new world" like white people dancing and drinking on the public bus when black passengers get off. Its very funny I remember it from high school. But she makes a good point. Society is not kind to overweight people at all. I was not immune from that but I give a lot of credit to my parents they really instilled in me an I can do ANYTHING attitude! Thus far they have been right soooooo watch out world domination is next! :-) Well win the lotto then world domination. :-)

A/w my point...Her "new world" was seeing the world through "Eddie Murphy eyes" and not liking it one bit. In fact her final line in her piece says "I hope I always stay fat on the inside." Deep. I could relate to her article because as I lost more and more weight people did become more obvious with their fat prejudice. Making snide remarks about "big people" and laughing at certain things that didn't sit well with me because 50-60 pounds ago that was me! Now these are not mean or bad people (ok well some can be mean! lol) but for the most part these are good men and women. But I am sure many would agree fat prejudice is the last "accepted" form of prejudice out there. What really made me think about this last year or so I was on a message board and someone asked would you rather gain (can't recall exactly) 25 pounds or lose a toe and I think out of maybe 20 replies only 2 said gain the 25 pounds. I being one of them because I think at that point I'd already lost 40 pounds so I wanted my toe! Plus I have a weird thing about missing body parts can't help it. I kept thinking hell I could lose 25 pounds again lol but every other woman but one would rather lose a toe than gain that weight! I was shocked but it just demonstrated to me what people really think about weight. I think what really struck me was most were not overweight at all and 25 pounds vs. a body part no matter how small just didnt compute to me. But that was me looking at the question from my point of view. But I was really taken aback and these aren't strangers we have been on this message board over 10 years so we know each other seen marriages, births, deaths, graduations, new jobs, new homes, travel together, party together, the works so it was like we were a pretty tight knit group that shared a lot but I never knew most felt that way about weight until that question was posed... I tired not to take it personally but it was hard not to but that was about them and their perspective and that's how they felt so I couldn't own that and eventually let it go.

Anyway my point here is not to talk about society in general but to talk about the health & fitness world and how that population differs from society at large.

I can not think of a more supportive segment of the population.

While I walk down the street people may not know I am an Iron Girl but while training and doing the event people had the utmost respect and support for me because I was in the race doing something along side them while others sat at home or on the sidelines. Sweet.....Athletic cred ie. street cred/credibility get it? lol
I often talk about my 2007 Baltimore 1/2 marathon experience and how supportive the other runners were. It really blew me away, here this man was at mile marker 20 of his 26.2 mile marathon and he was giving me the thumbs up telling me I was awesome! I am thinking DUDE.... NO YOU ARE AWESOME! !! lol But he was right too! :-)
My favorite memory was after the marathon we had to take the light rail (train) back to where our cars were and as I was getting off a group of guys were getting on with their medals around their necks and let me tell you they looked like they stepped right off the Times Square billboard for Abercrombie & Fitch ! You know what I am talking about! And they saw my half marathon medal around my neck and started yelling "Awesome!" and high fiving me and saying I rock ! Love it! I was totally apart of the cool kids! And loved every second of it! Plus they were hot! lol
Same thing with the Iron Girl we were all in the struggle together and people were soooooo supportive! Wheter it was during the swim or the bike ride or the run all this encouragement was outstanding!! People were yelling "You can do it!" "Go Team!" "You are amazing!" I eat that stuff up anyhow but wow what a feeling! Oooooooh and let me just pop our collective Iron Girl COLUMBIA collar! Did you know Iron Girl Columbia has the longest swim? And that all Iron Girls are NOT created equal!? Ok back to the regularly scheduled program. :-)

Anyway the point I am making is if you have some fear of working out at a gym or doing something like a marathon or half marathon or Tri or Dualthon etc. Don't be afraid or self conscious! Its not only for those that appear to be fit. In fact the health & fitness community in my experience is very welcoming and supportive of anyone trying to live a healthier life. So get started today! I think I will email the writer and ask her about her activities and encourage her to put her new body to the test and maybe try an Iron Girl event and experience yet another "new world."

Have a safe & wonderful holiday weekend! :-)


  1. Great insights and motivation. The just do it lifestyle and the parole plan mentality are important tools for us to learn in any situation.

  2. Thanks Jacquie! I am glad it made sense I was just thinking about it on the ride to work and seriously its just that simple. But as the saying (and title of my book) goes its about going "From Theory to Practice" :-)

  3. Wow, this post knocked me off my feet! So many words of wisdom and truth. As a woman who about 14 months ago weighted 260lb and climbing this post really give insights on the struggle and decision each one of us have to make. I am considering joining you next year if you participate in the Iron Girl race. I was thinking maybe I could train here. My gym has the huge pool, I all ready ride my bike, run and jog. I really want to do it, but would love to have a partner in the race.