aSweatLife Ambassador

If you like to sweat in Chicago, you may have heard of aSweatLife. I’m a big fan. I love their Sweatworking Events, I love Sweatworking WEEK (like Restaurant Week for workouts and it’s coming up again in January), I love their Lunch Bunch menus (a week’s worth of tasty and healthy lunches), I love listening to their We Got Goals podcast, they just launched an app that I’m sure is great.

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At a Sweatworking event last summer 

But what I love most about aSweatLife is that they make fitness fun and approachable and friendly. Sweatworking isn’t just about sweating, it’s about networking and meeting new people. And at every Sweatworking event are Jeana, the founder, and Maggie (not me), who are so friendly and sweet and welcoming.

Earlier this week, I attended a Power of She event at Athleta, featuring Jeana talking about her story behind aSweatLife – how it started, and why. And Jeana talked about the aSweatLife ambassador program, which I am extremely excited to be a part of in 2018 (and apparently for life, because she doesn’t kick out anyone).

The ambassador program started last year not as a way to help promote aSweatLife (although I’m sure that is a bonus), but to support their most dedicated fans and followers of aSweatLife and Sweatworking. The ambassador program was designed to help participants live their best life (through fitness and more), whatever that means.

I’m going to be honest. I have not been feeling like I’ve been living my best life lately. Earlier in 2017, I tried to zero in on what I thought I should focus on, and put other things aside. After a few months of that … I realized I wasn’t happy. So now I’m back to my usual M.O. – explore the opportunities in front of me.

For a while now, I’ve felt like I need to push myself to take the next step – but I’m not sure what that step is. I took on a new role at work a year ago, and it’s been great and I’ve learned a lot, and I have big ideas for what I could maybe possibly do with these skills … but exactly how do I bring that to life and how do I get there?

I’ve also been thinking a lot about my personal passions. I clearly love fitness and running. My professional life does not reflect that. Should it? Do I seek out certifications? Become a running coach? A trainer? Maybe?

Lately, a mantra I’ve been saying to myself is “this doesn’t serve me.” Usually, it’s regarding things like listening to a playlist that’s not helping my mood or deciding whether or not to go to an event. But I need to think bigger. What would serve me? In the past, when I’ve found myself in the position of teaching people, I enjoyed it a lot. I just continue to doubt that I’m enough of an expert that I should be in a position to teach anyone anything.

Recently, I posted on Facebook that I keep running into the problem where I have more interests than time to do all of them in a way that is satisfying. So, how do I combine the following into something (that pays the bills, preferably)?

  • Data / analytics / logic
  • Effective communication / sharing stories
  • Running / weightlifting / fitness
  • Burlesque / sex positivity / body positivity 
  • Art (creating and supporting) 
  • Making the world a better place    

I already know I love combining my analytical and communication skills into what I like to call a “data storyteller,” although I’m not sure if anyone else is calling me that. Yet.

Burlesque, sex and body positivity, and creating and supporting art go together very well, and I like to think makes the world a better place, even if on a very micro level.

As for running/fitness, one thought that excites me is combining that with data. How can we maximize time/effort to achieve the best results?

I also have thoughts for how to combine the fitness with body positivity and making the world a better place and communicating/storytelling into some kind of I Run With Fast Women blog and/or podcast, where I talk to awesome women who do awesome things with their bodies – I love the idea of loving what your body can do, not just be accepting of what it looks like.

This is a very long-winded way to say that I’m hoping the aSweatLife ambassador program helps me zero in on how to live my best life and create my own community around these ideas. But at the very least, I’m excited to continue to meet more people who love working out as much as I do and try new workouts around Chicago.

In the meantime, join me at Sweatworking Week!

But if you have any thoughts, advice, feedback, etc, to share, by all means, leave a comment. 

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2 Comments on “aSweatLife Ambassador”

  1. I am in like zero position to give you life advice, but that’s not going to stop me from trying! Haha. Personally–and I know this isn’t perfect apples to apples, but I’m going to use it as an example anyway–I’d be hesitant to recommend going in the coach/trainer direction (unless it was just something you did in your free time for the fun of it [and maybe to make a little extra $$]), because in my experience, trying to translate your hobbies into a career can be a lot less rewarding than it sounds on paper. For most of high school and all of college, I had ever intention of going into a writing-based career. I loved and believed I was good at writing, so it made sense. Why would I pursue a career in something that didn’t interest me or in a field that I found challenging? So that’s exactly what I did. I majored in English and then off I went to live the dream working at a magazine. I very, VERY quickly found that there was an ENORMOUS difference between writing because I wanted to write and writing because I HAD to write, and going from writing because I wanted to write to writing because I had to write made me stop wanting to write altogether. I still blog, obviously, so I suppose you could make the argument that I’m still writing for fun, but I’m not doing any writing to make money anymore, and I MUCH prefer it this way. I’d honestly be surprised if I ever pursued writing as a full-time gig ever again, and have found a ton more professional satisfaction (not to mention mental stimulation) in what I’m doing now (being a software system admin) than I ever found writing and editing. I’m sure some people are able to monetize their hobbies without losing interest in them, but in my experience, the moment you become financially dependent on what you used to do purely for fun, it stops being fun (so then you’re miserable at work AND you don’t have a hobby anymore, either). Maybe I’m just a cynical, jaded person, but I have come to VERY much believe in the separation of church and state, if you will, when it comes to making money and having hobbies. I’m much happier having my hobbies be 100% unrelated to my work, and maybe I’m crazy, but I think it makes me a more interesting person, to a degree–like most of my coworkers didn’t even know that I run until a few months ago, and I’ve been here for almost two years, because here, participation in the Chicago Marathon isn’t assumed. Of course, if it’s just a part time thing and not your main source of income, you may have a totally different experience than I had (though I will say that when I quit the magazine, I was sure I’d pursue freelancing, and I gave up the ghost on that about six months in. It was too much hustle with too little reward, especially when I didn’t need the money to sustain myself.). But that was my whole experience with trying to make my hobbies and professional life intersect.

    1. You’re totally right, and this is probably what has held me back from pursuing any kind of personal trainer/group fitness/yoga instructor certification. I think this is also something I’ve run into with burlesque – when it’s truly just for fun, it’s fun, and I can also come and go as I please. But once I start committing to too many performances, especially when they overlap with fun things I could be doing in my social life (and/or impacts my workout schedule), it starts to feel like work and I feel less joy. Although every time I show up for this “job,” I always have a lot of fun.

      With the data/analytics stuff, my long-term dream is to use my data analysis for “good” (i.e., make breakthroughs in public health or something), versus what I currently do (work towards increased profits for a publicly-traded company). I think the fitness stuff would just be a side hustle kind of thing.

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