Moving Across The Country

this is a photo I took in San Diego at Sunset Cliffs several years ago

Yes.
I’m moving.


Where: To San Diego
When: In two weeks
Why: Now that’s a loaded question.  I’ve always had an attraction to the West Coast.  Sunshine, heat, palm trees, surfers… who doesn’t like that?  Okay…if you don’t, we probably won’t be friends. Just being honest. But I’ll mail a postcard to your igloo…with a tropical care package.  


Since high school I’ve had this inner urge to go west.  I never really knew what that was about.  I didn’t know what was out there for me, if anything.  I was too scared to move alone.  I was always waiting to find a friend or a boyfriend to move with me.  The timing on those never worked out.  I’m now learning there will never be a perfect time to make a change.  The stars will never fully align, there will never be enough money in my bank account (um hello, moving expenses?! I’d like to actually be able to afford rent when I arrive!), there will never be a unanimously supportive group urging me on.  I will never feel 1000% certain of the outcome.  The future is unknown.  But life, I’m discovering, favors the risk taker.


I’ve worked as an Executive Assistant for the past 8 years in “Corporate America” – but don’t go picturing Gordon Gekko on me, it wasn’t some cut throat environment.  Pretty much the opposite…  Which makes it difficult to leave.  The first 2 years I worked as the Executive Assistant at one company, and the past 6 years to the present moment, at a different company. The guys I work for are some of the smartest people I’ve ever met.  I swear my one boss can read three books simultaneously at warp speed and find any grammatical error (I hope he’s not examining this blog post for them) within one hundred yards, and he knows everything about everything.  From finance to sports.  My other boss could sell sand to someone dying of thirst in the desert (seriously, you would be convinced you wanted sand and not water and then YOU would go sell it to someone else) he can negotiate deals, and he’s a social butterfly.  I use “butterfly” in the most manly sense.   My other boss is kind of like a star athlete-turned manager…but he still plays every inning.  Three completely different people to work for, all at the same time.  It’s been more than just a learning experience.  They will definitely be missed.


In the past 3 years I’ve gotten really into health and fitness.  I’ve had this website now for at least 2 years, writing and documenting things I’ve learned and discovered.


In the Spring of 2010 my Mom was diagnosed with breast cancer.  That is the very first time in my life that I’ve ever had to wrap my mind around the possibility of my Mom dying.  It’s one thing to think that thought…but to fully sit in that emotion, and think, wow.  She might not be here in a month.  This could be worse than they are saying.  She might never meet my future husband.  Or be at my wedding.  I cried at my desk at random that first week after her diagnosis, but I’m pretty quick with the tissues (and blaming my space heater or too much moisturizer for the tears) so no one really noticed…


Except for my co-worker, Kim, who would say, “how is everything?”, and my eyes would begin to water and she would say, okay, so how about those Phillies???? Sometimes not being asked about your mom’s cancer is the nicest thing someone can do.


But my mom is FINE!  She’s cancer free now.  She’s eating a fabulous high veggie, whole foods, all natural, hormone free diet.  Yes, I made her.  Yes, she now likes it all by herself.  ;)


My best friend Jodi in Connecticut is dropping weight like it’s going out of style and eating lots of veggies and whole foods.  The girl is turning into a super model.
Check it out – Jodi and I a year ago:

and Jodi NOW:
UM.  HELLO FOXY!!!



My sister is in amazing shape and a vegan and just participated in some PETA protests!
My sister before:

and my sister after:

isn’t she gorgeous!??

My brother stopped drinking a bunch of protein shakes and chemicals to keep weight ON and is now in the best shape of his life – a la Ryan Reynolds- eating a diet much closer to nature, and absorbing all of the info I throw at him.  He’s my bestest friend. Ever.

this is my brother and I at a Flogging Molly concert in 2010
he’s notorious for his cartoon-like face making skills in photos

this is him rocking climbing a couple weeks ago:
yes, he’s 6’6″ tall.  yes, he’s single ladies. mmhmm! ;)  

When my mom beat cancer, something in me changed.  It’s as if someone lit me on fire, and I can’t extinguish it.

  • If you knew that eating a diet high in veggies and fruits could save your life, would you do it?
  • Why does it take illness, disease, or death for someone to make a change?  Obviously, if you’re dead, you waited too long.
  • Don’t you want to feel great now?  Wouldn’t it be awesome to NEVER get sick?  Like never ever?
  • Wouldn’t it be fantastic to feel free inside your body and have a ton of natural energy?



Seeing someone get healthy and take back their life is a powerful thing.  Realizing that you helped them do it, is…well, I don’t have a word for that one.


Seeing my friends and family around me jump on the healthy bandwagon and change their lives…It’s been INCREDIBLE to watch and be a part of.


All I know is that I want to keep helping people.  I want everyone to be healthy.  I want to save the world. I do. Honestly. I know that it’s not possible to help EVERYONE, but I do know that I’ve made a difference and helped people change their lives.


I want to keep doing it.  


So, I’m moving West, to California, in two weeks.  I’ll be teaching fitness near San Diego (more on that later!!!) and doing nutritional consults for anyone looking to get healthy and feel fabulous!  I am hoping to spread the Raw Food – Whole Foods – Veggie message across the West Coast.  You can check the consult tab at the top if you are interested.  I currently have my Food Handlers Certification so I can make fabulous veggified meals for people, and I’m in the process of obtaining my NASM CPT Certification – (National Academy of Sports Medicine, Certified Personal Trainer Certification).  


I’m excited to be moving to a place where the weather is nice enough for me to be active outside year round.  I get so incredibly depressed during the winters here in Philly and I usually gain about 10 lbs UGH! – we had a mini snow-ice storm last night and everything re-froze tonight, so driving to the gym is out.  Running outside is out, unless I want to slip and fall.  The treadmill in the basement is not so appealing, but I’ll be on it bright and early in the morning before work.

i took this when I arrived at work this morning.
just…”lovely” weather. ;)



I’m not really into the bar scene, or weekends spent on the couch watching sports.  I’d rather be outside playing sports.  Rock climbing, kayaking, cycling, swimming, running, surfing…and I am not trying to knock the East Coast, it is my home after all.  I do know that there are a ton of active people here – but they’ve been extremely difficult for me to find.  I bought a road bike and didn’t know one person with a bike.  I had to hire a cycling coach so I’d have someone to ride with me.  I wanted to go rock climbing but couldn’t find anyone to belay me on the top rope.  I wanted to run a 5k, but felt strange going to my first one alone.  I’m a people person.  I need to find my active people.  I need to find my group.  I’ve really got no friends here that I pow-wow with, other than my brother.  I met this great guy a couple weeks ago at my local Rock Climbing Gym, and I thought, of course, of course I’m just meeting him NOW when I’m leaving.  Mister I-Like-To-Do-Every-Activity-In-The-Universe-Outside Guy.  Great.  Where were you for the past 31 years. Isn’t that the way it always works?


So yes, I’ll concede there is one person on the East Coast who is active, aside from my brother, and his name is Martin.  The rest of you need to get off your butts.  :-D   (don’t shoot me, I’m kidding I’m kidding)


So.  


The adventure begins.  I am shipping my car out this weekend so that it arrives in Cali when I arrive in Cali.  I would drive cross country, but I don’t want to put that kind of mileage and wear on my car (it’s already at 100k) and I don’t feel safe driving that distance alone, in the dead of winter.  Roads could be closed, people could be nutso, my car could vaporize, and I refuse to stay in a motel that resembles anything from a horror movie.  I don’t watch horror movies, but I’ve seen the trailers.  So I’m flying.


I’m looking forward to this new chapter of my life, and I’ll keep you guys updated on everything along the way.  It will be a busy next two weeks, so I apologize for the lack of raw food posts, I’m a packing and Good Will donating maniac right now, but I’ll do my best!


Fitness and Nutrition and Helping Others…it’s what I’ve become immensely passionate about…and I don’t want to be the 80 year old woman rocking away in her rocking chair on some porch…Country Time Lemonade Commercial Style, wondering…what IF???


I don’t want to have any regrets with this gift of a life I’ve been given.


I don’t want to squander my talents or my passions…because I feel I have them for a reason.  There is a reason I can’t stop thinking about them.  There is a reason that after I finish working every day, I come home and work on this website, or writing my raw foods book or I’m at the gym trying to pick up new techniques, or I’m reading piles of nutrition books.  There is a reason all of this has been more important to me than having any semblance of a social life for the past year…or two.  So I’m going to follow my heart, and my dreams.  I’m only moving with clothes and some books so you might see a few posts of me having a meltdown with a glass of wine, sleeping on the floor of a room somewhere in Cali, but hey, I’m expecting at least 3 decent sized panic meltdowns along the way.  :-)


Thanks so much for reading, and for your continued support and encouragement!


xoxo
Lauren


And now, in true artsy fashion, a poem and a song.


First, the POEM:


The Starfish Flinger by Loren Eiseley, PhD
As the old man walked along the beach at dawn, he noticed a young man ahead of him picking up starfish and flinging them into to the sea.
Finally catching up with the youth, he asked why he was doing this.
The answer was that the stranded would die if left until the morning
sun.
“But the beach goes on for miles and there are millions of starfish,”
countered the other. “How can your effort make any difference?
The young man looked at the starfish in his hand and then threw it to
safety in the waves.
It makes a difference to this one,” he said.

And now, THE SONG:

Lovely comments!

  1. I can’t say this enough girl….but i’m so, so excited that you’re FINALLY doing this!!!!!!!!!! and I can’t wait to visit your sexy ass in Cali. I love you. the journey has just begun…

  2. I love you too woman!!!!! Thanks for everything.

  3. Anonymous says:

    omg me and you are exactly alike I too always had this feeling to go out west I’m so happy your going for it I’m planning to leave king of Prussia this summer and go to makeup school I was talking too someone asking where to have my car shipped how much does that cost if you need a roommate ill be there :)
    http://www.facebook.com/CRYSTALCOUTURE

  4. Congrats on following your heart’s passion!! I have had a very similar path to you and can totally relate to that feeling you just can’t ignore any longer!
    All the best to you in the move and look forward to your future posts!

  5. I’m really proud that you’re finally getting off this coast. You’re going to kick a tremendous amount of butt out there. I’ll be cheering for you from my mountain of snow.

    Who knows… I may not be that far behind.

    P.S. thanks for soliciting me on here, haha.

  6. You are so courageous!!! If I didn’t have these two kids and a husband, I would be right next to you on the flight!!! You are going to kill it out there!

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