From Fit & Active September 2013 to Fit & Active 2014

It’s been a pretty hard year at Campbell & Kate, so when I try to assess my accomplishments for the year, it can get pretty discouraging.

Then last Tuesday I put on my new 32FF Panache sports bra for spinning class, and I realized that I’ve achieved something very important after all, and it all began with last year’s Fit & Active September. Last year at this time, I met my goal of exercising 16 times in the month of September. This led to joining the YMCA in October, and this eventually led to listening to my doctor’s warning about my high cholesterol and enlisting the help of an amazing nutritionist. Since I mentioned my nutritionist last March, my LDL cholesterol has come down another 35 points to 102 (it was 217 last December), and my doctor says I am now in the “low to no risk” category for heart disease. On top of that, he’s halved the dosage for my blood pressure medicine.

I am so grateful to Nicole over at Fussy Busty for helping me start this path to better health. This year, Sophie at Two Cakes on a Plate is going to kick off a Fit & Active October, so look for related posts in the busty blogosphere.

I don’t have any “fit and active” goals this year other than to keep doing what I’m doing. Instead, my October goal is to be wearing a bra by 9:00 a.m. every weekday–pretty much the opposite of what Mia wrote about last week–because I have a theory that I need to be dressed so that I can walk out the door in order to be productive. Otherwise, I feel like I’m still in my pajamas, and I just don’t seem to take myself as seriously when I feel that way.

Even though I don’t have any fitness goals for the month ahead, I want to share my biggest takeaway after reaching last year’s Fit & Active goal. Everyone says to listen to yourself, and this was a situation where I had to take a risk to do so. We had been trying to save money by going without a gym membership, but I could tell that boredom was setting in after just five of my sixteen walks. I had already tried to make do with the cheap gym closest to our house, but it was super crowded, and the only class I liked was becoming repetitive. My husband joined an inexpensive gym with great equipment a little further from our house, but they had no classes, and I knew I would need more than weight machines, treadmills and ellipticals to keep going. The Y, on the other hand, was clean and spacious with a lot of classes taught by qualified instructors. The only problem was that it was 14 blocks away, and Mr. Campbell felt I’d never use it.

I decided to join to prove him wrong. I knew I needed to take better care of my health, and I knew I needed a gym like this to do so.  Besides, if I didn’t use it in October, I could cancel my membership without losing any money.

Readers, this decision led to probably our third biggest argument in our marriage so far. We have an agreement to consult with each other before we spend anything over $200. Because a year’s membership costs almost $700, Mr. Campbell felt I had violated the agreement, but because I joined when there was no initiation fee, and each month costs $57, I felt I’d kept it. However, I knew why he felt bad–I had purposely joined without consulting him because I knew he would try to talk me out of it.

Fortunately, the risk paid off. I’m the slowest runner in boot camp and still can’t do a real pushup, but I can feel muscles in my arms, and my waist has reappeared. I knew my very health depended on joining that gym, but I am so very thankful that our marriage survived my subterfuge. We’re even getting stronger in the way we deal with money together.

So you can see why putting on my 32FF Panache sports bra to go to spin class last week was such an accomplishment.


Off the Rack

Sorry, no Off the Rack this week. I’m away for the weekend. But I’m hard at work altering my Le Mystere Soiree Low-Back Bustier so it doesn’t peek out of my wedding dress, so get ready for a nice, long alterations post in the coming weeks!

Best Breasts Forward ~ Taking it off

I’m sure most of us have seen this meme.


Or this one.image

Or this one.image

They all apply to me. No matter how well it fits or how beautiful my breasts may look in it, I hate wearing a bra. The first thing I take off after my shoes is my bra. In fact my husband, son and daughters are accustomed to finding a bra on the seat of a kitchen stool, dining room chair or neatly folded and tucked under a decorative pillow on the sofa. I always do a bra check before “company” comes over.

I haven’t always been this way. I was still too self-conscious to go braless in my own home growing up, and the first time I lived with someone I was still uncomfortable. It took about three years of living together for me to feel okay walking around my home without a bra in front of my husband, but I haven’t turned back since. At this point in my life, my immediate family has seen me nurse two children for a year each, so seeing my covered breasts without a bra is no big deal.

Because I am such a “bra remover”, I’ve become curious about the effect it has had on my breasts. There are those that say not wearing a bra makes them “saggy” faster; however there are studies that report wearing a bra could increase sagging. They all found that how much your breasts sag has to do with genetics more than anything.

This has led me to ask, why do some large-busted women wear bras all day and even sleep in them? Do you experience pain or discomfort when not wearing a bra? Do you sleep in a special bra?

I always get such useful information from my readers, so I’m looking forward to your input.

Corporate Curves Report: Dress for success? Maybe there’s truth to it.

Seminars, I don’t know how I feel about them. If they are free, they often are too much sales pitch, too little real tangible interesting content. Great for networking for sure. But I suppose it’s mandatory to at least attend a few per year just for networking purposes.

The autumn seminar season has begun, and my first pick was a HYPE 2014 The Digital Revolution seminar by Gartner and a few other partners. It was pitched as the “Event for REAL future leaders” for ICT and business management.

Sea of dark suits, the lady in front of me became one of my new connections.

Sea of dark suits, the lady in front of me became one of my new connections.

This was not purely an ICT seminar and it also wasn’t free of charge, so I had to take it quite seriously. So the major problem “what am I going to wear” hit me. I hadn’t figured it out even the night before the seminar! I woke up really early before the alarm went off and just thought about it.

  • I wanted to feel comfortable
  • It was going to be a warm and sunny day
  • I could not wear heels because of a sore ankle

Ivanka Trump jacket from Macys, Milano jumsuit from Marshalls, Ecco loafers, Nine West watch.

I quickly decided on the black jumpsuit (the one I wore at the Big Bust Clothing Swap last month) because it’s super comfortable, goes well with flat shoes, and with its leather detailing and simple look it’s professional enough – but only with a formal jacket. So black jacket? White jacket? I was worried that I’d not feel comfortable in a white one and I could wear my colorful Marimekko accessories with the black to make it less dull. BUT I’d still be wearing all black in a sea of dark suits. So white it had to be. Black and white is always a classic! And I LOVE how Kerry Washington’s character Olivia in Scandal wears white jackets and coats all the time and looks so chic.

It was a chilly morning so added a Luhta snood. Bag is by Brooklyn Industries.

It was a chilly morning so added a Luhta snood. Bag is by Brooklyn Industries.

This was actually a replication of the look so my hair is messier and had time to play with my dog.

This was actually a replication of the look so my hair is messier and had time to play with my dog.

I’m glad I did! The seminar was a huge success and partly because of what I wore. I got complimented on my outfit by other professional ICT leader women and got to know people through that. I’ve always been a bit doubtful over the phrase “dress for success”, but hmm, maybe there is something to it after all. I made some pretty impressive new contacts there which I hadn’t even dreamed of and it was a busy and fun networking day full of great ideas.