Looking Ahead to 2019

As we tick ever so closer to the new year, I find myself getting more and more anxious, excited, and hopeful for 2019. I keep saying “THIS year will be MY year”, only to falter on some of my goals. But this time is different. This time I have tangible opportunities to win over an enthusiastic audience all over the country with ZooFit.

It’s not just ZooFit which gets me excited for 2019. I have plenty of activities to enrich my professional life, my social life, and family time. Looking at my new desk calendar (which is actually a 2002 calendar, but wouldn’t you know, it’s the same days), I am getting quite giddy about all the events, conferences, and fun times we have planned for next year. My year is pretty packed, which is good, because each month I have something incredible to look forward to.

January: My first ever ZooFit Safari Challenge! I have been working on this beauty for about two years, and I’m finally ready to unveil it. Teaming up with South Island CrossFit gives me a chance to work one on one with participants, and promote the gym as well. This challenge is open to new members for $150. It includes the meal plan and recipes, 3 workouts a week, my ZooFit Exercise Guide, and a SIC t-shirt. Members who want to try it out are invited to join, too. I want feedback on my meal plan and my workouts, so the more the merrier. I’m nervous and anxious about this beta testing and the results/feedback, but it’s all to better ZooFit, so I can’t wait to test it out.

February: In February, I’ll be heading to a Women’s Conference right at the end of my ZooFit Safari challenge. I honestly don’t know what to expect, but it should be a day of empowerment and networking with other women. So a good experience, I’m sure.

At the end of the month, I’m visiting my family in South Carolina. Usually, I visit during the holidays, but I got a little busy, and next thing I knew, I hadn’t made plans. February should still be fun, though.

Sometime in February, Chris and I plan to begin our search for a place to live in Bellingham. There are several reasons for moving off the beautiful community of Whidbey Island. First, it’s a little closer to Canada. We keep joking we are scooting just a little closer to Canada and eventually we will just LIVE there and pretend we’ve been there all along. But the truth is, we’ve wanted to live in Canada for a while, and living closer gives us more opportunity to check things out. The writing community is pretty strong in Bellingham, as is the art community. There is a bit of a younger crowd, too, because of the university. This may play well to develop ZooFit as a more popular program.

And besides, our landlords are planning to sell their house, and we haven’t been able to find anything remotely as nice in the vicinity of Whidbey Island. One day we think if we decide to settle down in the United States, it will likely be Whidbey Island. We love the smallness and closeness of everything. And we’ve made some great friends. But our wanderlust is calling us to explore more, and Bellingham is our next stop.

March: March starts my insanely busy time. In the first half of March, I will be presenting Reuse, Recycle, Reduce Your Waist at the local libraries. This is an opportunity to share my passion with the community, and possibly sell some of my books. I hope this is just the beginning, and I can schedule more talks with schools, local gyms, community centers, and other venues.

Another first of what I hope to be many is me attending Dallas Zoo’s Regional AAZK Symposium as a sponsor and special presenter. I’ve been asked to share how taking care of ourselves provides good welfare to the animals. I am also sponsoring the complementary breakfast, which they have agreed to make as healthy and sustainable as possible. My hopes are I start being asked to come to zoological facilities to talk to the staff about ZooFit. Keep racking up my support and followers. And make ZooFit bigger each time I present.

April: Next up after my trip to Dallas is a more local venue. I will be a sponsor for the Animal Behavior and Management Alliance conference in Portland in April. By the time this conference rolls around, I will no longer be a two-trick pony with only two books. ZooFit Safari will be published by then. I also want to have Positive Reinforcement is Not a Burger After the Gym finished, along with Fandom Fitness. That’s three books in just over three months. But with ZooFit Safari pretty much done already, I feel confident this is a doable goal.

Also in April, I’ll finish my Group Fitness Instructor program and be ready to take the certification exam. This is an awesome step, because it will make me a little more marketable to fitness centers, and I can possibly bring ZooFit to other gym facilities. How awesome would THAT be? I’m studying already, and I have found my experience in CrossFit, teaching classes, running the Sloth Army, and attending other classes like Pilates has been insanely helpful. By April, this should be a breeze.

May: This may be my only true relaxing month. The only thing we have planned is going on a cruise with our donor. May will be our 9 month anniversary, but it is the anniversary of when Susan told us she was a candidate. We are taking her on an Alaskan cruise. Our third, but Susan’s first. This is a true celebration for the past year, and our way of thanking Susan for such an amazing gift. And Alaska is fun as hell. Hopefully, there will be plenty of birding to experience.

Chris and I should be living in Bellingham by May. Even if we aren’t, we will likely be very close to moving. So, maybe not exactly a relaxing month after all…

June: We don’t have exact details yet, but sometime in June, Chris and I will visit his family in Kentucky for a family reunion. The kids are getting so big, and his parents came out this past year, so it’s time for a visit. It will be nice to unwind and be with family without stressing about ZooFit, but I may put out feelers if anyone wants me to visit their zoo while I’m there.

Mid-June offers a grand opportunity to mingle with local writers, editors, and agents at the Chuckanut Writers Conference. My experience at my first writers conference was a little frustrating, but I learned a lot, and have a path to follow (sorta). This conference will refine my path. Or let me know if I’m on the correct one. Who knows? I might have done enough work this time to warrant getting an agent.


August: No, I didn’t skip July, it’s the only month I don’t have anything planned. Don’t worry, I’ll be using my time wisely to prepare for August, the National AAZK conference. In 2018, I made my ZooFit debut. This year, I want to be the bad-ass on campus, with five (or six) amazing books to offer, presenting a workshop on Toastmasters, and either a workshop or presentation (or hell, both) on ZooFit. I hope to schedule more presentations at zoos, get my books into zoo gift shops, and really make my mark as the founder of conservation fitness.

October: My hope for October is to hit Leaky Con in Boston. I will help any of my friends with their vendor table if needed, and maybe slip my own books on the table for sale- Fandom Fitness and possibly Fantastic Beasts and How to Save Them. I say possibly because my big wish is to actually traditionally publish Fantastic Beasts, but I’m not entirely sure if it’s something which can be published because of copyrights. If it helps, Ms. Rowling, I plan on proceeds going to ACTUALLY help our fantastic beasts. But if it isn’t to be, I will still try to self-publish and get it out for the world to read.

December: I can’t say too much because my mom reads this blog, but I will let slip that my parents’ 50th wedding anniversary is in 2019. I am trying to be the dutiful daughter and get something nice together. But obviously, I want SOME of it to be a surprise. Rest assured, Mom, Chris and I will be celebrating with you and Dad. Fifty years! They still act like love-sick teenagers, too.

So, there’s my year in a nutshell. Jealous? Or exhausted for me? It’ll be a grand adventure, either way. I hope you will all join me in some of them. It’s definitely going to be MY year!

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