Have you ever had one of those moments where it seems as though the universe is talking to you? You know, maybe you have an idea or a conversation and the next time you pick up your phone, turn on the tv, open a magazine, or walk outside, you see something that reminds you of that idea or conversation. You just cannot get away from it.
Well, as I mention in the About section of this site, I started thinking about the idea for Fandom Fitness when I was in my first semester of my Fitness, Nutrition, & Health certificate program (Spring 2014). Now that the site is in its fledgling stage (the Maz Kanata egg muffin recipe marks the 20th post on the site!), I’m seeing other outlets like blogs, YouTube channels, Instagram accounts, and retailers also focus on pairing fitness with nerdy/geeky passions. One brand in particular that is using fandoms to make fitness accessible and fun is Her Universe.
Her Universe is one of my favorite brands for geek fashion, which I’m sure is obvious if you’ve read any of the posts about activewear, but it’s also one of my favorite brands for the positivity that it brings to the greater geek and nerd community. Not only is it one of (if not THE) first brands to make fashion specifically for female fans of Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica, Star Trek, The Walking Dead, Doctor Who, and Marvel, but it celebrates being a member of a fandom as well…. whatever that may be. Her Universe specifically celebrates female fandomonium with its “Fangirl of the Day” posts, size range (kids’, juniors’, plus size), and Ashley Eckstein’s positive and inclusive demeanor.
This past Sunday, Ashley and Black Widow stunt double Heidi Moneymaker led a Black Widow inspired training session via Periscope. The routine consisted of four sections with choreography straight from a Black Widow fight sequence. The queuing was clear, the routine fun, and the sweat flowing.
My favorite aspect of the routine was that the whole group was positive and encouraging (even after the session, I’ve gotten “thank you for joining” reply tweets and comments on social media.OMG that’s so kind!) We’re all at different fitness levels, which Ashley acknowledges at the beginning of the session:
“Here’s the biggest thing I want to say today: anyone can do this. No experience is necessary. I don’t care if you get through the whole training session or you just do one part. This is something that the whole family should do together… Don’t be intimidated. If you feel like you look silly, who the heck cares?! Cause you’re training to be like Black Widow! And practice makes perfect…”
Everything that Ashley says about participating in this workout is what every person should remember before walking into the gym, turning on a DVD, following along with a YouTube video or printable. “Anyone can do this.”
Having been taught and trained to create a fitness environment that is accessible to any person, and having the passion to take that environment specifically to other nerds, geeks, fangirls, etc. I was nervous about this routine. I’ve been thinking about Fandom Fitness for a couple of years now, and seeing the same idea come out of another person or brand my first thought was “Oh no! Please don’t be a cash grab. Please be genuine. Please provide modifications. Please don’t ruin this idea.” I’ve seen trainers and instructors make fitness about themselves (how they look/how good they are at the exercises/how popular their class is) to the detriment of a client’s experience, so I had some of that anxiety with me when I joined the Periscope session. As soon as I heard Ashley say “Here’s the biggest thing I want to say” I felt all of that worry dissipate.
This brings me back to the beginning of this post: does it seem like the universe is talking to you? For me, I feel validation in Fandom Fitness and the growing segment of the community that wants fitness and health to be accessible to everyone because “anyone can do this.” Maybe for someone else, it’s that it’s time to start working out, or that you shouldn’t feel intimidated by exercise, or that Black Widow is awesome and so are you. Whatever it is, I hope that Ashley’s words motivate and inspire you as much as it has me.
Also, while the Periscope video was only available for 24 hours. Ashley and Heidi did say that they’re going to film this routine for YouTube, and that they’re hoping to do more of these sessions in the future. So we have that to look forward to!)