Thursday, September 26, 2013

Me a model? What?!

Contrary to poplar belief I do not like pictures of myself and I hate taking them even worse. I see every thing out of place and every flaw. I rarely buy race photos because more often than not I look like a bag of smashed buttholes. I know most people hate their race photos too. But, I'm talking about the photos where other people think I look great but I think I look fat or my race gear is unacceptably askew (did I just use the word "askew"? How fancy!). I scrutinize EVERY photo taken of me at any time and drive the people taking photographs nuts. I went from being the skinny, bean pole kid to the fit Airborne Ranger (of course because of the job there were no pictures taken of me then) to the fat, eat everything in sight adult. So I've always had hang ups about how I look. Of course...then I would get into a triathlon...a sport filled with people who are physically fit and shredded whether they're competitive or not.

Imagine my level of agida when I found out that as part of my being selected as a lululemon ambassador again this year I was going to get a triathlon themed photo shoot. It coming on the heels of Timberman and my being laid up for a week and not being able to train and race properly kinda derailed my plans for being "shoot worthy". Honestly I was considering last minute lipo surgery the day prior. I was so stressed out from the camera "adding 10 pounds" more to my fluffy frame. Now I did a photoshoot last year as an ambassador. Only one image was used last year...and the photographer had trouble shooting me because I was carrying weight around my waist that was showing up on camera. Let me say that I'm not upset about the photographer telling me that. It was the truth...but it was all I could think about going into this year's shoot. The location for the shoot was "Walden Pond" (and yes it is a real place not something Thoreau imagined for a poem) and it was a gorgeous day. Imagine my surprise when the photographer walks up and is blown away by how "awesome and fit" I look and I "don't even look like the same guy he shot last year". Talk about putting my mind at ease and in the right mindset for a photoshoot! Oh, let me talk about the photographer for sec. Kadri Kurgen is this chilled, mellow cat who takes PHENOMENAL images. You can see some of his work here on his website and I suggest you like him on Facebook too. Kadri had just returned from this photoshoot of naked yogis in the desert and the images are breathtakingly beautiful. Talk about setting the bar! This was a "triathlon themed" photoshoot. We started with cycling and instead of trying to shoot me in motion I suggested we find a good spot for light and put me on a trainer. The imagery that Kadri shot was amazing, including a shot of the light coming through my aero bars/hands!
A quick change of clothes and we were on to running...right along the water of Walden Pond...awesome. Running consisted of my essentially doing 100m sprints by Kadri as he snapped images. He also would stop between shots to tell passers by that he was shooting a "famous up and coming triathlete"...oh, the looks I got. I didn't have an appreciation for what we were doing until Kadri showed me some of the images on his camera and I was awestruck. I look like a lean, muscular "Kenyon-like" runner. I dream of being that guy...but to see it in a photograph left me speechless.
Lastly was the swim. I had never dipped a toe into the water at Walden and now I know why folks love swimming there. The water was comfortable and calm (Thoroeau was spot on). This picture is the one that Kadri put on his Facebook page (told you to go like him). I actually look like a pro triathlete or a model in a print ad. Kadri is an amazing photographer and if he can me ME look like a's a true testament to his skills. I can't wait to see the rest of the photos when they get released and there will be a "3 shot" from the session made into a giant poster and put up in the Natick lululemon store for the next year (gulp). It's been one of my greatest experiences a validation of the athlete I am and want to be and fuels me for the coming year!

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