Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Rock Bottom

No one ever really knows that I exist. In the public eye, Hoopnotica has two "faces"... Rayna and Keaton. I adore both of these ladies so much; together we have built a thriving company, and we all have made sacrifices to see it off the ground. I have done so while tending to two children, my husband, a remodel, and a big move. My big sacrifice has been to myself, and now I am ready to make a new commitment, by first coming clean.
When I started Hoopnotica, it was in response to taking Rayna'sHoopnotic Hoopdance classes in LA. I had just given birth to my first child, and wanted a fun, new dance class to help me shed unwanted weight. So I rallied my best girlfriends around me to make the commute from Long Beach to Hollywood, in order to take advantage of the carpool lane. What started out as a crazy suggestion (Who ever heard of a six week hula hooping class!!??), became a transformational experience for all of us. I lost 20 pounds in the course of the summer, my girlfriend lost 15, my other girlfriend became more outgoing and learned how to dance. It was crazy. I had a vision for this company from the beginning that felt powerful: to share Hoop Dance with the world, by building a legitimate business around it. 
Over the course of the next few years, Hoopnotica took off like wildfire. We created instructional DVDs
; a collapsible Travel Hoop; designed accessories from clothing to hoop bags and a curriculum that anyone can learn to hoop from. Keaton and Rayna have been featured on programs airing from Hollywood to Japan. Our biggest claims to fame have been Good 
Morning, America, the Today Show, the Girls Next Door, and TIME magazine. I got pregnant again, somewhere
in the mix, and began to accept only radio and telephone interviews. Rayna and Keaton continued to interview, appear, and move on. I breastfed and balanced the budget.
One day I realized that three years had gone by. Hoopnotica was asked to travel to Japan for a cornucopia of co-branding and other partnership opportunities. We assembled the best Hoopers we know to create a Spice Girl-like team to represent us. This was the first time I really wanted to represent Hoopnotica physically. So I did this photo shoot, and was declined by our "people" in Japan. It was explained to me that, regardless of my hooping skills, I was not the right image to entice the Japanese public into using Hoopdance to control their weight. I had never considered that I would be turned down to represent my own company, and I was pissed.
My first reaction sounded something like, "You can't do that to me; I OWN the company!" But then I realized that those Japanese folks were right: I was in terrible shape, and that I was in no position to represent a fitness company. Somewhere along the line I had quit hooping, and let myself go. And now I was paying the price- I still get to go to Japan, but just as support for the other girls.
I turned my fury into motivation, and have committed myself to a daily Hoopdance practice to achieve my weight loss goals. Half an hour a day, seven days a week. I will decrease my caloric intake, drink more water, and practice what I preach: that Hoopdance is a powerful transformational tool. I will photograph my progress along the way, and hope that it will motivate others to join me. So if you know any Moms who could benefit from this blog, I beg you to pass it on. I could really use all the support I can get from those who understand my position.
This is probably the hardest thing I have ever done; to proclaim publicly that I am overweight right now, and to be held to account as I change it. I will have NO SHAME- I promise. I hope you enjoy it!



Keaton said...

You are and always will be, an inspiration. xoxo

nenuphar said...

I'm not the owner of a fitness company, but I do very much understand how you feel. I used to be hot stuff, then got married and had a child, blah, blah.

Somewhere along the line I had the wherewithal to become a flamenco dancer, and my teacher has praised me highly...but when I see photos of myself on stage, ouuufffff. Ouch. Ugh. I'm not professional, but still...I feel so bruised at having to face facts. And I have gigs coming up.

So I'm with you. Let's do this.

nenuphar said...

Oh, and I forgot to mention that you looked *hot* in the photo shoot!

Liz said...

Hello HoopMama!

Keep up the motivation and the blog entries! I just read through your blog as well as the Hoopnotica blog and was thoroughly entertained! I am impressed with your determination and your goals will definitely become reality with your way of thinking.

I recently took a travel hoop with me, strapped to my backpack, 15+ miles on a trail into Yosemite National Park! Completely worth it! It was used just as much by an 8 year old girl and a 5 year old girl (Keaton's neice) as it was by me!

I was inspired last February by Keaton at a family reunion gathering on the beach south of Santa Cruz. Since then, hooping has become a growing force in my life. I love it. I have helped others learn of it and come to love it too and it sure is fun to share this wonderful activity with friends and family.

My boyfriend is Keaton's cousin (there's the "family reunion" connection) and I currently live in Eugene, Oregon. I am preparing to become a Hoopnotica certified teacher and hope to begin teaching classes this fall.

This blog really is a great addition to the main Hoopnotica website. Thanks for working so hard to provide it and congrats on working toward your summer goal!

Best and maybe we'll meet someday . . . (-;

Liz said...

I mean "Hoop MaMMa" . . . it seems to sound different with two Ms (-;