but this year, the calendar was completely open. i roped in the usual suspects - the teen, lilcee, and dailygluttony - and we bought our tickets the moment they went on sale. i was super excited about it, considering the fact that i've become a total fangirl with a full library of jillian's DVDs. and when i got this email:
i clicked and entered my information, and promptly forgot all about it. that is, until i received this email just days before the big day:
i squealed like a schoolgirl and then noticed something else - lilcee's name was on the list of lucky winners too. it was "shape"-ing up (see what i did there? har har har) to be a day chock full of win. the only bummer was that the teen ended up getting scheduled to go in to work that afternoon, and there was just no way she'd be able to join us. although the teen has already met jillian michaels once before, so she wasn't too sad about it.
i picked lilcee up at her place so that we could carpool, and got down to hermosa fairly quickly. parking was a bitch, though - we circled the same areas several times and almost gave in to the $15 lot, but on our way there we managed to snag a spot on the street. with a 2-hour limit on the meter, we headed towards the beach and found that the fun was already in full swing. it was a gorgeous day.
pink for jillian's class, blue for the goody bag, and black and white checkers for the meet & greet.
there were classes already in progress.
out in the large fitness area, tony horton of p90x fame was leading a group of sweaty enthusiasts.
since we had time to kill, we headed over to grab our goody bags.
and we managed to score more free stuff to add to them.
the official "before we get super sweaty because the sun will be beaming down on us while we get our asses handed to us by jillian michaels" group photo:
the announcer took the stage to lead us in a warm-up, and the three of us kind of half-assed it. he walked around the group to pick people to do their thing right in the front two rows, where jillian would focus her attention, and while i typically love that kind of stuff, i didn't really want to be up there. it was super hot, and i don't function all that well in heat like that. but check this out - do you see that girl in the middle? my hat (had i been wearing one) was off to her - she looked to be at least six months pregnant, giving it her all and doing burpees like a champ.
finally, everyone was in place and jillian ran out to get the party started.
i snagged this picture from instagrammer @Misss_Piggy. it's a great shot.
but also, i was dying. i like to think that i'm fairly fit, and i can keep up pretty well with most of her workouts on DVD, but the combo of the excitement of having her right there in front of me along with the extreme heat and the sweat dripping off of me from head to toe was killing me. i had to stop to catch my breath or grab a sip of water several times, and i felt like such a wuss. ugh. but it was cool as all hell when she came through the floor and was literally right in front of us a few times during the half-hour workout.
that shot was courtesy of my pal dailygluttony, who had the presence of mind to grab her phone to snap a few pictures as jillian sashayed right past us. i, on the other hand, was far too starstruck and dumbfounded to reach into my pocket, where my own phone was waiting for the right opportunity. which i missed. because i am a fool. oh, well.
when the class was over, jillian waved at us as she ran back into the tent - presumably to freshen up a bit before coming out for the meet & greet. we tried our best to get dailygluttony into the line with us, but the staffers were extra diligent about making sure that everyone who was allowed back there had a wristband AND was checked off the list a second time. they were not playing around.
but first, let us take a selfie.
happily, we didn't have to wait long before she came strolling up, surrounded by an entourage.
lilcee was ahead of me in line, and as soon as she walked away, jillian turned to me and held her arms out. i stammered out an "OMG, i'm so sorry, i'm so disgustingly sweaty!" and she just smiled and said "oh, it's totally okay, i am too!" and she pulled me in for a hug. we turned to the camera for our picture (no cell phones allowed!), they took a couple of shots, and then it was over. although i'm pretty sure the words "i love you" came out of my mouth before i got outta there. ha!
if you follow me on any sort of social media, you'll already have seen this picture. probably more than once. i don't care though, i'm posting it again anyway. because i can.
one final shot before we got outta there (just before our meter ran out):
here's all the swag i scored:
oh yeah - do you see that in the corner? here's a closer look:
later, as i perused other pictures on instagram, i came across a shot that had been taken from the stage during the class. check it out:
yes, i'm a total dork. i OWN that shit.
you know, during those 4.25 seconds that we hung out, just me and jillian, i got the sense that we could totally be BFFs. i just know it. i know she did too. sorry i had to leave, bestie. i didn't want to get a parking ticket, but it would totally have been worth it.
there's always next year.