My blog's been a little quiet lately, but life's been plenty busy. Check out some recent branding work my partner and I did for YogaSpark, a new yoga studio in Mamaroneck, New York.If you live in the Mamaroneck area, I strongly recommend checking it out in person. It's sixty minutes of hot yoga with cool people, fun music and a great vibe. I guess you could say, "it's yoga. fired up."
This blog post, A Different Kind of Marathon, was supposed to be about the experience of the 2013 Boston Midnight Marathon Bike Ride, a whole new way of experiencing the Boston Marathon. Over 700 of us met at the marathon starting line in Hopkinton, the night before the race, and rode the course all the way to Copley Square. This was the fifth annual ride and an extremely fun way to feel like a part of the marathon action. The event, as silly as it sounds, really gives you a feel for how intense the course is. And on race day, you look at the runners with a whole new respect. (At least I did.) I highly recommend it.But unfortunately, the Midnight Marathon wasn't the end of my strange Marathon Monday experience. As you know, two bombs went off at the finish line. I was a block away when it happened. It was awful. Devastating. And infuriating. My thoughts and prayers are with all of those affected.Below is an Instagram from what should have been a beautiful marathon weekend in Boston, taken by my old co-worker, Michael McCrary. I thought it captured the beauty and spirit of this fantastic city so sweetly. The beauty and spirit that I know will help Boston get through this tough time.
Wednesday night was the 36th Annual Empire State Building Run-Up. 738 runners came together to run 86 stories to the observation deck of Manhattan's tallest building.I’ll admit, I was nervous the entire day leading up to the race. I had never done anything like it before. And falling twice within three minutes of the start didn’t help my nerves. That’s right, I fell. Twice. Turns out, racing up stairs is a lot different than racing on the road. It was crowded. And dizzying. The air was incredibly thick. And the heavy breathing echoing all around me was intense.I began to have doubts about making it to the top. And then I remembered overhearing someone at the start say, “enjoy the pain.” So I tried to do just that. And it was the best advice I’ve ever indirectly been given. Because I made it to the top. And had a blast. Check it out:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mzw0_uYgL1U&feature=youtu.beThanks to my brother for agreeing to look like a lunatic with me and wear a GoPro on his head, and to Ben McCool for mashing up our videos!
I just hiked the Inca Trail. Destination Machu Picchu. That's four days with no computer. For a designer, that's potentially more challenging than acclimating to the 13,800 foot altitude.And with all that time in the open air, with no distractions, I was certain I'd return to work with more ideas than I knew what to do with.Turns out, I came back with absolutely nothing.Nothing... but a clear head.But to me, this was even better. I'll be the first to admit that I have trouble putting away my computer. And my work. But the rejuvenation (and sanity) I returned with from Peru was incredible. It made me realize the power of unplugging. Escaping. Just being. Sometimes our minds need to zone out in order to zone in.Below are photos of some of us zoning out on the Inca Trail. Taking it all in. Appreciating life. Something I plan to do a lot more.I'll leave you with a quote I read back in May in an article called "Don't Fall Asleep at the Wheel: Successful Entrepreneurs Have Lives."
My advice, then, is to understand that your business will not die and fall off a cliff if you take a break. It is okay to spend [time with] people you love. Don’t feel guilty about hanging out with friends. “Balance” is determined by your work style and your needs outside of work; don't fall into the trap of working 80 hours a week—whether out of compulsion or fear of failure—and ignoring life.
(No, that cliff pun was not intended. And yes, I need to listen to this advice more than anyone.)So tell me, what do you do to refresh your mind?
A couple of months ago, as you may have read in my post, Resolution: Color, I decided to add more color to my life. Around the same time, I started seeing Color Run imagery pop up all over social media sites. Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook, YouTube...Considering the first ever Color Run was just in January 2012, word sure was spreading quickly. Over 22,000 people signed up in Philadelphia alone, and I don't think I saw a single ad. Just fun, vibrant, amazing pictures all over the interwebs. Oh, the wonders of social media in advertising.If you actually haven't seen it, The Color Run is a 5K held in numerous cities throughout the nation. Participants wear white and are covered in different colored dust at every kilometer.Considering my color resolution, I thought it inappropriate not to sign up!Before (That there on the right is team "Pantones." All two of us.)AfterThe incredible clouds of color at the finish line festivalProps to founder Travis Snyder for creating this unique event that is getting the country talking. And more importantly, exercising.So tell me, do you have killer pics of your city's Color Run (or as it's also known, "The Happiest 5K on Earth")? Link us to them in the comments. We want to see!
I often wonder if social networking sites are good for society. Sure, they keep us connected and informed. But they also promote procrastination (I mean, I have probably checked Twitter five times since I started this paragraph) and encourage narcissism (Sorry Facebook "friends", I don't care what you ate for breakfast). Social networks have also been known to facilitate bullying and even expose us all to predators.But Under Armour, with the help of Red Tettemer + Partners, has created a social network that is truly positive and inspiring. It 100% negates any doubt I had about social networking.The Under Armour network is called What’s Beautiful. It started as a 9-week competition to find the three new faces of Under Armour Women.But what the network actually became is much more than that. It became a place for women to set goals, push each other, encourage each other and inspire each other. It became more of a community than a competition.This week, What’s Beautiful announced its ten finalists. They also announced that there will be no end to What’s Beautiful. The site will remain active after the competition ends.A poster we designed for UA to post on another inspirational social networking site, Pinterest.If you're curious, the goal I set for myself 9 weeks ago was to “Bike 150 miles from Boston to Provincetown in 2 days, then finish it off with 5 pull-ups.” (note: I have never been able to do a pull-up in my entire life). So for nine weeks, I trained and documented my progress, along with thousands of other women, on whatsbeautiful.ua.com.Well, the Bike MS: Cape Cod Getaway was this past weekend. The moment of truth. I made it 75 miles on Saturday and 75 miles on Sunday. Check! It was challenging and exhausting. What got me through the rough patches was thinking about the people with MS who struggle every day. But their struggle doesn't end after two days like it did for me. That thought stayed with me through every steep hill. And so did the encouragement I received from friends, family, colleagues and of course, the women of What's Beautiful.As for the pull-up portion of my goal... well... it was not met. Instead, I finished the race off with 30 push-ups. But like I said, the What’s Beautiful site is staying active. So with the continued help and encouragement from other women, I know I will accomplish my pull-up goal in the near future.I guess you could say I am now convinced that if done right, social networking can be good for society. And it can make a difference. A beautiful difference.So tell me, what would your What's Beautiful goal be? Better yet, go sign up and tell the world.