Monday, February 1, 2016

TALES OF ANXIETY FROM A CATHE ROADTRIP SIGN UP

Last week, I had the opportunity to sign up for the 2016 Cathe RoadTrip in Glassboro, NJ.  What?  You've never heard of a Cathe RoadTrip?  My Goodness, where have you been?  You need to click here so you can see what I'm talking about!

Okay, all caught up now?  Great!

Did you notice all the fun that was had in that video?  Yes, it's an awesome weekend and it's something that I have grown to look forward to each year.  Only problem is that signing up for said RoadTrip produces more anxiety than this pictures does for someone with severe OCD:
You see, Cathe Friedrich opens up her gym in Glassboro, NJ to 105 of her loyal followers (known as Cathletes), which is GREAT!  But, there are about 10 gazillion of us who want to go and we're all ready to sign up at exactly the same time.  At 1:00pm (exactly!) on Sign Up Day, Cathe's team adds a "Buy Ticket" button to her website.  Then it's an all-out race to see who can input their contact and payment information (and t-shirt size!) the fastest.  The first 105 Cathletes to sign up successfully are guaranteed a spot for the fun-filled (and sweaty) weekend.  Still confused on why so much anxiety?  Perhaps this clip from Big Bang Theory will give you an idea of what Cathletes go through at 12:59pm on Sign Up Day.  Click here to see the video!

Now do you see what I'm talking about?  It's completely crazy and the anxiety produced in the hours approaching 1pm is downright ridiculous!  Allow me to share with you my (ahem, embarrassing) experience that eventually lead to my successful registration for the 2016 Cathe RoadTrip.  Oh, and have I mentioned that this RoadTrip SELLS OUT IN MERE MINUTES???!!!  Hence the anxiety...and the NEED FOR SPEED!

It's important to note that when registering, you need to use a credit card that doesn't expire before June of that year (Sign Ups are processed in two payments, the second of which goes through in June).  About two weeks ago, I received a new business credit card in the mail since my previous credit card was about to expire.  I use this card for all business expenses like office supplies, workout DVD's, and RoadTrips.  I was happy that I had a new card with an expiration date reaching into the next decade but that's when the anxiety began.  Will the new card work?  What if there's an issue?  I knew I had activated it but it hadn't been USED.  I couldn't afford to risk it.  So, an emergency shopping excursion was planned immediately!  Thankfully, I needed some new fitness equipment so those purchases were completely justified.  I'm so glad that you agree!

Since I have gone through this Sign Up process twice previously, I knew that my Game Day environment needed to be top-notch!  My computer had to be fully charged and connected to the Internet, my clunky bracelet had to be removed and my hair tied back (no distractions allowed!), and my son (home from preschool by that time) had to be completely occupied and aware of what was about to go down ("hey buddy, would you mind leaving mommy alone for the next 30 minutes so she can prep, process, and recover from the most stressful experience of her life?").

Think I'm exaggerating?  Well then, let me share with you some of what my fellow Cathletes were going through as they began their Sign Up prep (and by the way, I DO NOT recommend checking Facebook right before registering as it will just compound your already-existing anxiety levels).

"Is anyone else getting nervous?"

"I keep having this sudden panic in my gut that I'm going to forget and miss the 1pm registration time.  I forget lots of things these days.  On Friday I will be pacing around like a caged animal, setting alarms everywhere and setting up three devices to the registration page.  Should be a wild day!"

"I'll be at a conference in Orlando - I don't care who's speaking at 12:55pm (oh, who am I kidding, I'm out of there at 12:45pm) to find the perfect spot with the best wifi for my laptop, iPad, and 4G signal for my iPhone...just in case."

"So Friday I had a hair appt at 11 to get my hair colored.  The snow came and we cancelled.  Stylist asked if I can do next week at the same time and I said sure.  Now mind you this is a 2 hour process.  The next day I realize the Friday if RT sign ups!!  WOW, I cannot believe I did that.  But disaster was thwarted."

See what I mean?  I'm not alone in my insanity!

So, as I was driving home just after 12:00pm, on my way back from my son's preschool, I couldn't help but notice how strong the wind was blowing (please, please, PLEASE don't blow too hard and knock down a tree and cause our power to go out!).  I had all my alarms set on my phone - you know, the standard ones: 12:45pm, 12:50pm, and 12:55pm.  You can never "over alarm" as each one serves a purpose in my preparation!  As soon as I had my son settled (and informed of the silence needed), I had some time to kill and the countdown was driving me nuts!  I occupied myself with folding a load of laundry and emptying the dishwasher.  But then it was time.  Time to REFRESH that Cathe website over and over and over again.  Not sure what I'm talking about?  You watched the Big Bang Theory video clip from above, right?  

REFRESH     REFRESH     REFRESH     REFRESH     REFRESH     REFRESH

Any moment now.  It's going to pop up at any moment.  Any second.  The next time I click REFRESH, it'll be Game On!  Any minute now.  

Holy Crap, IT'S TIME!

The moment that "BUY TICKET" appeared, it was as if my limbs left my body and I couldn't control them.  My fingers were shaking and there was sweat dripping down the side of my face.  All of the breathing techniques that I had practiced to help stay calm weren't helping and my mindset of "I'm not going to stress about signing up this year" flew out the window.  It was like the toughest cardio workout ever, complete with elevated heart rate!  But I made it through and up popped the most beautiful screen shot I had ever seen:





"Your Payment has been made successfully!  Please check the confirmation mail for the ticket number".  Beautifully written, yes?

But don't assume that the anxiety ends there.  Where is my confirmation email?  Why haven't I received it yet?  Did I really get in?  Was there a glitch?  Was my credit card charged?  How will I know if I'm confirmed?  Facebook exploded with fellow Cathletes announcing their acceptance and joy.  I begin to see that others have not received their email either.  Wait, did that person just say that she DID receive an email?  Oh no!  WHERE'S MY EMAIL???

As the stress turned into pure excitement (I did eventually receive my email confirmation - but only after I contacted Cathe's support team), I couldn't help but notice that my sweat-soaked sweater needed dry cleaning, my heart rate was still racing, and I was wondering if it was too early to pour myself a glass of wine (I know, I know ... it's NEVER too early!).

I can't even begin to tell you how much I'm looking forward to working out with Cathe and to seeing all of my fellow Cathletes again.  There's nothing in the world like working out with over 100 friends from around the world.  This year's RoadTrip sold out in less than 6 minutes and now that it's over, I can say that all the sweat and stress was totally worth it!  Here are a few snapshots from the 2014 and 2015 RoadTrips.  Stay tuned for pics from THIS YEAR'S ROADTRIP!








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