Oy, Oy, House McCoy

Sometimes life intersects in crazy ways. Like “how is that even a real thing this is so awesome” crazy ways.

By now most of you know I am an actor (actress? does it really matter?). Well for the past couple of late summer into fall seasons I have been working at a local Renaissance Festival portraying various village characters and performing in the Shakespeare play.

Well a few years ago they decided to run with a Hatfield/McCoy based storyline.  I know…. Hatfield & McCoy’s in Renaissance England, wasn’t the feud in Kentucky and West Virginia????  Well, yes.  But they made it an English vs. Irish shindig and I’ll give you one guess which side my redheaded self was on:

Irish McCoy’s!

The Six McCoy Siblings

The Six McCoy Siblings

Of course we look much fiercer with our warrior woad paint on:

Ready for battle!

Ready for battle!

Not only that, I was Rosanna McCoy.  Yep, I was in love with Jonny Hatfield and King Henry himself ensure we were married at the end of the day in hopes of ending the feud.

Marriage solves everything... right?

Marriage solves everything… right?

We spent a fair amount of the day shouting “Oy, Oy” and getting the patrons to respond “House McCoy” to show our pride!

Point being when I stumbled on a list of the best marathons in various states one in particular caught my eye: The Hatfield McCoy Marathon

Despite not playing the exact historical Rosanna McCoy I still based a lot of my research on the families of the Tug Valley.  I was instantly drawn to the idea of running where this history occurred.  And although I had originally thought Marine Corps Marathon would, hopefully, be my first I started rethinking my plan.  After all I had essentially spent 6 months thinking about these people.

The more I researched this marathon the more there seemed to be to love.  Every recap I read was glowing, a rarity at best.  It is a small race.  Goes through Kentucky & West Virginia.  Race director is a descendant of the Hatfields. Best of all: no time limit! And they mean that.  I looked at last years race results and the chance of being able to finish short of injury or illness is very very high.

Plus who couldn’t love the tagline “No Feudin’, Just Runnin'”.

So, I might be considering The Hatfield McCoy marathon as my first marathon.  I can only hope I end up on team McCoy!  And can maybe get an “Oy, Oy, House McCoy” at the finish.

Keep it irish & fierce!

-Little Red

What race means something to you?  Any crazy random discoveries lately?


Shakespeare Saturday

Along with my short long run today (I was only scheduled for 3 miles) I returned to something I love: Shakespeare!  No really I love Shakespeare and as an actress I don’t think I have ever felt more comfortable with a text than his.  Abnormal – yes, true – yes.  There is just nothing like the moment when the text finally just “clicks” and you suddenly understand every motivation your character has.  Basically I’m convinced Shakespeare made the acting part easy.

I have been so lucky to get to play some pretty exciting and diverse roles:

PicMonkey Collage

Across L to R: Kate (Taming of the Shrew), Juliet (Romeo & Juliet), 3rd Witch (Macbeth), Miranda (The Tempest), Puck (A Midsummer Night’s Dream), Rosencrantz (Hamlet), Adriana (The Comedy of Errors), Clown (The Winter’s Tale), Hermia (A Midsummer Night’s Dream)

I have this life long goal of acting in every show Shakespeare wrote.  I’ve knocked a lot off the list, but there are many more to go.

But back to today.  Today a friend and I met up at Sweetgreen to have a healthy lunch and discuss revamping a project we have done in the past: Shakespeare in the Pub. 

Delicious Harvest Salad

Delicious Harvest Salad…

with a side of Shakespeare!

…with a side of Shakespeare!

It is pretty much exactly what it sounds like, readings of approximately hour long versions of Shakespeare staged in bars across the area.  Oh and the actors are in fact allowed to imbibe which makes it all the more exciting for the audience! We are ramping up to a thrilling year bigger and better than before starting with a variety of scenes, monologues, and sonnets based around love for Valentine’s Day.  We were determined to balance the sappy with the funny and even some pretty sad stuff so that all varieties of folks could enjoy the evening.

Needless it brought a lot of excitement back that I had been missing from acting.

Guess what I’ll be reading on the stationary bike tomorrow?

Keep it shaken & fierce! (ok so I’m not as witty as he was)

-Little Red

Shakespeare: love him or just something you slogged through in school? (I promise I don’t judge)  Who is your favorite author?

A Midsummer’s Resolution

Anyone who has ever made a New Year’s diet resolution, joined a gym, talked to anyone ever, or lived has really discovered how hard it is to create and maintain a healthy lifestyle.  Full disclosure: I have belonged to all of the above clubs and rode the lifelong roller coaster of being on and off the fitness track.  I get in a good groove making my own healthy meals, working out 5-6 times a week, attempting to meditate and take time for me, drinking ALL the water ever.  Then, inevitably, my life gets busy (usually in the summer) with teaching summer camp, extended day duties, travel in awful DC traffic to rehearsal, acting my face off, drive back home, pound through memorizing lines, and crash.  All this leaves little  make that no time for anything else.

There's a reason these are popular shirts!

There’s a reason these are popular shirts!

My eating is usually reduced to snacking on the job or gasp fast food on the way in the car.  Workouts…. when?  Weekdays I do the above and weekends I am busy performing the show I already rehearsed.  My job often means missing best friends’ & family members’ weddings, vacations, birthdays, and everything in between.  A missed workout seems paltry in comparison.

But this is something I want to work on this year.  It may not quite be a New Year’s resolution but since I am a Shakespeare girl anyway I’m gonna call it a Midsummer’s Resolution.  (Okay, so it’s spring but summer is when it will get crazy!)

Part of that will be using this spring to establish some health & fitness habits! I was clicking through Pinterest procrastinating searching for inspiration for a lesson plan when I stumbled upon a Women’s Health article: 15 Fitness Habits You Need Establish In Your 20s.

Well if that wasn’t fate!

So what does it include and how can I improve or maintain by fitness habits:

1) Fall in love with strength training– current score: B, I love strength training and am missing that sore feeling for a great pump session a bit with Insanity’s focus on cardio. Hopefully I can bring a few days into my run training soon!

2) Drink more water- current score: C+, When I remember this I am great, when I don’t remember I am awful.  Doing theatre outdoors this summer I will really have to stay on top of this or I will pay the price.

3) Vary it up- C, I like running & dancing, I like feeling like I am improving in something.  I also know I am going to plateau without changing some things.  I have plans to try some different workout routines, Insanity is part of that.  Hopefully I can keep it up.

4) Embrace the rest day- B, It’s a little more difficult with such an outlined workout program like Insanity.  If anything I like my rest days a little too much!

5) Learn proper form and don’t cheat- B+, I mean who doesn’t cheat a little on that last bicep curl when you just don’t think you can do anymore…

6) Switch up your running shoes- F, I have one pair of running shoes, one pair of cross training shoes, and one pair I use for teaching dance when sneakers work better…. Maybe once my christmas bonus rolls around.

7) Refuel properly post workout- D+, Slowly but surely improving.  I don’t like milk so the chocolate milk solution won’t work for me.  Anyone have a go to they want to share?

8) Go to random gym classes- D, I’m not part of a gym so this isn’t easy but I am looking at trying some new stuff and will update soon!

9) Stretch before and after you exercise- C, Because I am following what Shaun T does I am doing well.  When Shaun T isn’t there I tend to want to save time.  And stretching hurts… hmm maybe this was the reason I am the only dancer I know who can’t do a split.

10) Make your workout a part of your day- D, This is going to be the main struggle this summer y’all!

11) Be mindful- C-, I’m always on the run and the busier I get the harder this is.

12) Invest in good workout clothes- C, You know what actors make right? And I’m not talking Jennifer Lawrence here.

13) Do either yoga or pilates- F, I struggle with yoga I always have and I have yet to try pilates (I know I know how am I that behind on the fitness craze)

14) Choose your friends wisely- B, We all know Triple A is clearly a good support system, and one of the theatre’s I work for is doing a health challenge/group.  However, actors are also notorious drinkers and I do love me some Jameson.

15) Have fun- C, The last rule we have for acting classes we teach too! I’m decent at it but I also look at fitness as something I have to do… this one needs some work!

So how did you stack up? Be sure to check out the article for detailed info.

Here’s to keeping a fit & fierce lifestyle!

-Little Red