metta movement chicago: #100miles100smiles

Lately I have been incorporating more yoga into my life. Not just the physical poses but the mental and emotional dedications that it calls out of you. And while I’m still getting the hang of the physical aspect, I can’t begin to tell you how much happier I am when I take moments every day to move closer to a yoga state-of-mind.

In yoga there is a deeply rooted belief in giving without expectation. This is one of the most beautiful phrases to me and, coincidentally, one of my greatest challenges. I always, always, always give with expectation. I am loyal and am always thinking two steps ahead about how to add a little sunshine to someone’s day. I love people and so I find myself thinking about them more than the average person (or so I think). Unfortunately, in the past, this has been met with very high expectations in return. When people don’t return the, for lack of a better word, favor, I get disappointed and hurt. It has affected many of my relationships in many different ways. That being said, sometimes our greatest weaknesses can transform into our greatest strengths once we identify them, and thanks to yoga and the philosophies surrounding the practice, I have been able to face that weakness head on and work on it.

I’ve said it before and I’ve said it again: I’m extremely lucky to work for a company that not only exemplifies a healthy outlook on life but fosters this kind of personal development. And beyond individual well-being, lululemon athletica is dedicated to social health as well.

Every year lululemon provides funds to support community projects that contribute to social and environmental health. This is called the “Metta Movement”

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Metta

the idea of generating love and happiness for others

an altruistic attitude of love and friendliness as distinguished from mere amiability based on self-interest

the strong wish for the welfare and happiness of others

This year is my first year participating in our Chicago-area Metta Movement, and I couldn’t be more excited to share the details with you! (I’m looking at you, Suzy, Bethany, Amy and all my other Chicago-area bloggers!)

#100miles100smiles

This Friday (November 7th) lululemon athletica Chicago will be hosting our first ever 24-hour event to raise funds and awareness for Smile Train, an organization dedicated to providing free, safe surgery for children in developing countries with cleft lip and/or palate. David Coligado, one of our store ambassadors, was inspired after a trip to South Africa where he saw how poverty has affected how the other half live. A particularly saddening fact is that physical deformities can affect children for the rest of their lives, not only physically but socially. For example, every baby born in Uganda with a cleft is given the name Ajok which means literally, “cursed by God,” with some newborns killed or abandoned right after birth. What people don’t know, however, is that any child with a cleft can be helped with surgery that costs as little as $250 and takes as little as 45 minutes. That is life-changing for a child in a developing country, and a goal that Dave literally wants to run for.

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Through this year’s Metta Movement, we, alongside Dave, are hoping to raise $25,000 for Smile Train.  Dave is, in a word, a superstar. He will be running on a treadmill in our store window for 24 hours — with the goal of running 100+ miles.

**drops the mic**

No, he’s not a robot but he’s as close to superman as I’ve ever seen.

In order to give him the most support, love, and gratitude, we are opening the doors of our Rush/Walton location this Friday night at 8pm after our normal shopping hours are done and throwing a party all night! That’s right, as he runs into the wee hours of the night, we’ll be hosting an event unlike anything we’ve ever done before! From appetizers (by Graham Elliot) and improv, to neck massages, flash tattoos, silent auction and everything in between, the night is going to be a blast! And that’s not even the best part: we are hosting workout classes in our store ALL NIGHT. Ever wanted to try Shred415?  Head on over to lululemon on Rush/Walton at 1:15am for a free class (yupthat’srightfreeeee). Boot camp? No problem. See you at 2:15am. Hip hop yoga? 5am it is! And if you’re just a crazy person and want to jump in the lake with Dave and all of us crazy educators, we’ll be jumping in Lake Michigan at the end of the event! Because, I don’t know, I think Dave might need an ice bath after that. Just sign up!

If you’re not from Chicago you are still MORE than welcome to support Dave in any way you can – thoughts, prayers, vibes, or heck, your wallet. Whatever strikes your fancy. Just visit his site – get to know him a little better. He’s a Chicago gem.

We are crazy-excited to help Dave reach his goal so that he can travel overseas this December and personally deliver a check to the Smile Train medical team. I mean, how often do you get to be so directly involved with changing the lives of one person, let alone a hundred children?!

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Please feel free to reach out to me via email {ihadabiglunch@gmail.com} if you have any questions or want more information about this amazing event Friday night! You know you wanna go 🙂 It’s like having a slumber party, but with all the other fitness freaks of the world. Can I get an amen?

Here’s the final schedule – take a look!

unnamed (11)**This post is composed of all my own thoughts and opinions about this event – it does not come from lululemon athletica.

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33 comments

  1. Wow that looks like such a fun evening for such a good cause! Hope we get a recap! 😉
    I am loving yoga too -for the physical elements but so so much for the mental aspect too. It helps me reflect, connect my mind with my body and also to completely rest my mind which I find so hard. I also really resonate with what you said about giving, I too used to give and give with that expectation of it in return – and I have been hurt so much because of it. But changing my mindset really helped – I still give but I don’t expect in return, I give because I want to and if I get back, well that’s just a bonus!

    1. I really does connect the body and mind. It’s such an amazing feat to relax like that, I totally agree with you! Giving without expectation brings you so much peace! You think it’s going to be a huge change in your life, or you’re just not going to get anything in return, but the exact opposite happens: life feels more fulfilling, in my opinion 🙂

  2. Sounds like a fantastic event that benefits both us and the children! There is always something great going on in the states, isn’t there?!

    Yoga really is grstifying. I’ve been finding myself out expectations on my yoga practice, such as hold a certain pose and getting frusterated if I can’t. Trying to let go of that unhealthy grip.

  3. I”m definitely going to try to stop by at least once, but unfortunately it’s the same day as my work’s flag football tournament! I love the message of the whole event, though. I really think paying it forward, putting good energy out into the world, works, because it engenders it within you and creates that intention and background to your day,

  4. this is such a nice cause and looks like it’ll be an awesome event. hope it goes wonderfully, girl. i’m with you on loving people and devoting a lot of your time and energy and thoughts into relationships/people in your life — that’s my overriding passion, too, and what led me to pursue this grad program in relational psych/therapy that i’m doing now. 🙂

  5. Ha — call out noted 😉 Funnily enough, I actually had heard about this last week. I think one of your coworkers may go to PT at my clinic. Or at least I was pretty sure the girl worked at lululemon, though she may work at a different store (I have no idea what her name was, nor to I remember what she looked like, so obviously I’m being really helpful here 😛 ). Anyway, she was talking about this to one of the PTs when I was there last Thursday. I don’t know what my Friday looks like at this point, but I’ll see if I can make it down!

  6. I couldn’t agree with your first paragraph more! I feel that way but struggle to put it into words. I am SO MUCH better in a yoga state-of-mind!

    So sad that I won’t be able to make the Metta movement this weekend but I”ll be with you in spirit. So glad that you are so happy with your job!

    1. I’m so happy with my life in general, 1) because I put myself first and 2) because, by putting myself first, I’m in a better place to give without expectation. It’s a weird paradox – the best version of myself stems from just a little selfishness 😀

      1. That is so well said! It’s the life I”ve lived for the last ten or so years (without realizing it but it’s what I’ve done) and it has served me well so I know great things are coming your way!

  7. Wow! This is really an amazing movement and so so worth while. I love the altruistic attitude. I think I too often feel like I do something for others so I expect something in return. It kind of undoes the good. I hope the event goes really well! 🙂

  8. Sounds like such a great event and for such a great cause too! Good on you for getting involved with something like this 🙂

    I always say I want to do more yoga but haven’t got around to it. I have however been doing more meditation which definitely helps me stress less.

    1. Honestly it’s hard to incorporate yoga into my life too – I just want to sweat and burn calories so it’s hard to slow down and dedicate some time to it haha. That’s why I love yoga sculpt – it’s two-in-one. I work my butt off and get some yoga in. But then there are those days when I’m like NOPE I need actual yoga! I need to chill! haha. I know when it’s time 🙂

  9. This is amazing!! I also love that you’re focusing on welcoming yoga into your life as more than just the physical practice of it. I interviewed this yogi author one time who had an unbelievable story about healing his body and mind through his practice, and he kept saying how people think that yoga is just exercise, but it’s really a way of life. I think about that often, and try to be yoga-like in my daily life too!

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