Showing posts with label Fitness. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Fitness. Show all posts

August 20, 2015

Favorite NYC Fitness Classes



I've always a big fan of workout classes, but ClassPass has really fueled that addiction. Granted, ClassPass isn't perfect, but the ability to take unlimited classes each month is a big perk to me. As I have tired a bunch, I thought I would share my current favorites and the ones I've got my eye on to try. I've marked my favorites on the map above, and listed out some others I like below.

{Yoga}

{Dance}

{Strength} 

{Barre} 

{Spin}

{Want to Try}

Any favorites, I should try? Let me know!
* image via

February 28, 2014

Recent Favorites

While this blog has (intentionally) shifted from a daily diary type blog to a more personal fashion and style space, I do still like to share what I've been up to, and things that I've been enjoying (aside from the obvious fashion related ones!). In that vein, I do want to continue with my Friday posts being a bit more personal in nature, and focused on new things I've tried and general tidbits about my life. Please let me know any thoughts on the matter - I always love getting constructive feedback! Without further ado, here are some favorites from the week.

I read Victoria's post for The Well about Todoist and I can't wait to try it out! I am always on the hunt for a better way to organize myself and everything I need to get done each day.

I finally decided to give ClassPass a try. I'll definitely do a more in-depth review after a few the month is up, but I started out with a class at the newly opened Brooklyn location of Xtend Barre last night. There were tons of positives about the new studio and some aspects of the class that I really liked, but overall I have to say I wasn't a huge fan of the workout or the experience. The energy was definitely lacking and what little there was felt very forced, and I didn't like the workout nearly as much as I like some of the other barre classes that are out there. But, I will definitely give it another try.

Did you see this amazing infographic from Mediarun on the gowns from every past Best Actress Oscar winner since 1929? Obsessed.

Who watches Downton Abbey? Thoughts on the season finale? I find the magnitude of the general chatter around the show to be so amusing. I have been watching Masterpiece Theatre (the organization that broadcasts BBC/ITV productions to US audiences through PBS) since I was a kid. It was absolute Sunday night ritual growing up: 60 minutes then Masterpiece Theatre. Anyway, there have been so many amazing shows over the years, and yet this one has garnered far and above the media and pop culture attention of any previous production. Don't get me wrong, I love the show and I'm thrilled its brought Masterpiece Theatre more into the mainstream but I find it curious all the same.

Happy Weekend Everyone!

January 21, 2014

Fitness Essentials

Untitled #6
I'm typically a pretty motivated exerciser, but laziness strikes us all from time to time, and I've found a great way to combat that is by switching up my routine to try new classes and workouts and adding a new item or two to my workout wardrobe.  Here are some of my tried and true favorites as well as a few items from my wish list.
I am fairly devoted to Lululemon for athletic apparel as I haven't found any other brands that hold up to repeated washings quite like it does. However, the prices are steep, so I try to mix and match my Lululemon with pieces from Target and other lower priced lines. For Crossfit I typically wear either Reebok or New Balance minimal cross training shoes, such as these, but I have my eye on a pair of Reebok lifting shoes as well. I recently snagged this yoga mat on sale, and its been a total game changer for my favorite hot vinyasa classes. No more slipping around or tripping over your towel! Another item on my wish list is a Fitbit Force, its taken me quite a while to narrow down which fitness tracker I want to get, but I think I have finally decided on the Force. Any other recommendations? What are your favorite fitness essentials? 



November 3, 2013

Weekend Snaps



The weekend started with a much needed drinks and dinner at Olea and a teensy bit of wedding talk. We are trying to ease our way into this, but we managed to get a few decisions out of the way. Saturday after CrossFit I headed to Soho to the MM LaFleur popup shop (#mmpop) and to Hitha's event. I had a great time at both though sadly I didn't find that magic LBD I've been searching for. After I met up with M for some shopping for a few things for our apartment. We didn't quite find what we were looking for, but a browse through Fishs Eddy is always fun. A little pumpkin soft serve from Chloe's was a perfect afternoon pick me up!
Marathon Sunday is one of my favorite days in the city, the energy is so contagious! Congrats to all the runners out there! In CrossFit today I had a minor breakthrough with double unders thanks to some new speed ropes, which felt fantastic. The afternoon was dedicated to shooting some photos for the blog, working on our new bar cart (final photos to come!), making Cioppino for dinner and blogging. 

Hope you had a great weekend!  

September 10, 2013

Go-To Green Smoothie


I am a big fan of smoothies for breakfast, and while there are many pre-made options that are quick and easily portable, they often have lots of added sugars and preservatives, which I like to avoid whenever possible. Here is my go-to recipe for a quick and healthy green smoothie. This recipe is perfect for those post-workout mornings when you are short on time, and need to get some nutrients and protein in quickly. It can easily be made before running out the door, as the most time consuming part of this recipe is simply dumping everything into the blender. 


Ingredients: 

1+ cup liquid*
1 scoop protein powder of choice**
1 large handful greens: spinach, kale etc. 
1tsp Super Greens Powder (optional)
1tbsp ground flax seed
1tbsp chai seeds
1 banana (frozen)
3-5 ice cubes

Blend & Enjoy!

I promise you cant taste the greens at all, but if adding raw greens to a smoothie makes you a bit wary, try out the Sunwarrior Ormus Powder, Super Greens as it is very mild and has a really nice, minty taste and smell. I like to add fresh greens and some Super Greens powder but its up to your personal taste.

*I use a mix of water & un-sweetened almond milk, but any milk or even coconut water would be great
**I have tried many dairy-free varieties, PlantFusion & Sunwarrior Warrior are my favorites


I am not a huge banana fan, so I like to put that in my smoothies and enjoy any other fruit on the side. 

June 5, 2013

Try Something New


The other night I was sitting at work contemplating heading to the gym for a cardio workout or going for a run outside, however, neither seemed all that enticing. The weather outside was hot and humid with predicted thunderstorms necessitating a perfectly timed run, and the treadmill, well it just sounded boring.  I had been meaning to try out a nearby dance studio that specializes in African dance for quite sometime and this seemed like the perfect opportunity. 

I checked out the website and signed up for a dance fitness class called Aché. I used to take Zumba pretty frequently and I hoped this would be somewhat similar, and if it wasn't, I decided I could always hide in the back. 


Reclaim your aché (the universal life force present in all things) as you dance and sweat to an energetic mix of salsa, merengue, hip hop, Afro-Cuban, Afro-Brazilian, West African, and other fun dance styles. 

Well, as it turned out, I was the only student. The teacher was very sweet about it, and asked several times if I was comfortable doing class with just her. Honestly I was a bit intimidated, but she mentioned that it was a new class and she was having a hard time getting a consistent group of students each week. So I decided to stick it out. 

I danced ballet and jazz for years when I was younger but I really don't have any ability to 'move' so to speak. Despite my inhibitions about being the only student and my very stiff motions, especially in comparison to the teacher, I had a great time. I was out of breath and sweaty minutes in, and a few songs in, I stopped looking in the mirror and just tried to enjoy myself. This was a great reminder to do something outside my comfort zone every once in a while, and I definitely want to try out some other classes!

image





May 21, 2013

Workout Update

Workouts. I used to write a lot about them around here, but then I got out of the habit a bit and I just realized I hadn’t mentioned them in ages! I am still doing a mix of CrossFit, short runs/ HIIT workouts and the Physique 57 DVDs. 

This cycle at CrossFit, (see here for more on training cycles) I have really been focusing on my squat. I am trying to squat twice a week – which is a lot, but I really need to try and focus my form if I hope to make any progress. Rarely is it a hindrance to be super flexible, but squatting is one of those areas. Put some weight on my back and I tend to drop so low that I then struggle to get back up without breaking form. This has (in the previous cycle) led to a small but very painful tear in my left quad muscle, so I am holding off on increasing the weight too much until I gain better control over the lift.

We have also been working on strict pressing, bench pressing, power cleans, and deadlifts. Power cleans used to baffle me, but I have been working on them consistently this cycle. Icing my collarbones has become a part of Thursday morning routine as I am still working on the control aspect of the lift, but I am finally hitting a better jump position. 




As for those (in)famous CrossFit WODs, here are some recent favorites:


15-12-9-6-3 Reps For Time Of:
Dumbbell Burpee Hang Power Clean Burpees* (I cant even begin to describe how awful these were) 

20 AbMat Sit-Ups


For Time:
20 Thrusters 115/75

20 KB Swings 53/35

20 Burpees
20 Calories Rowed
270m Run


For Time:
Row 800m* (I ran instead of rowed)

40 Burpees

20 Toe to Bars or 50 Sit-Ups


With a partner, alternate rounds for 15 minutes of the following triplet:
5 Chest to Bar Pull-Ups* (scaled to jumping pull-ups)

10 Hand Release Push-Ups

15 Squats or Pistols


What is your workout of choice? 

Reach any fitness milestones recently? Have any big goals? Share! 

March 29, 2013

Five Things

1. I signed up for the daily news digest, The Skimm. I have the Wall Street Journal and CNBC up pretty much all day at work, but its nice to start out the day knowing whats going on in case I don't have time to read the headlines till later in the day. 

2. I am really trying to get back to morning workouts. I gave myself a pass during the depths of winter, but things need to change stat. Work is busy, life is busy and mentally I just like getting my workout out of the way early. 

3. Indulging in some bubbly on a Wednesday night while catching up with the ever-amazing Julia



4. Rainy evening walks through Brooklyn. 




5. Four day weekends. I had to take the day off yesterday to use up my last 2012 vacation day before the end of Q1. It wasn't great timing as the office was closing early anyway and, I ended up working from home most of the day. But still, working in jeans while g-chatting and catching up on personal stuff is never a bad thing in my book.  

Weekend plans include finally purchasing a new camera, making it to a yoga class, tackling 13.4, taking a day trip out to the Hamptons, and date night with M. 

Have a great weekend and Happy Easter! 

March 17, 2013

Lately

Braving the cold (and snow!)...


To tackle 13.2. I scaled the weight to 55lbs and got just shy of 8 rounds or 225 reps. I far exceeded my expectations on this one. It was fun and awful at the same time! 


Saturday afternoon I finished up finding some spring items for our trip. I ordered quite a few items online and took a trip to Bloomingdales for some makeup and found these fun necklaces as well. 


Saturday night we got dressed up and braved the snowy/rainy weather for a double date at Talde. Amazing!! Yes, its a bit of a hike to get there, and yes the wait is quite long (we put our names in at 6:30 and were told 1.5 hours), but grab a drink at the bar (the Lychee Martini is delicious) and stick it out because the food is unbelievable. As the only non-meat eater of the bunch I sampled about a quarter of the dishes that were ordered but everything got rave reviews all around. I am still thinking about those brussels sprouts. Seriously. 


After a late night I managed to get myself up and to the gym early Sunday morning, breakfast and grocery store before collapsing on the couch for most of the afternoon. I am so, so sore from 13.2! I was really craving a biscotti, so M was amazing and picked me up one when he was out running some errands. Served with a big much of chai tea it was the perfect afternoon snack! 


How was your weekend? What did you get up to? 

Dont forget to check out my guest post!



March 13, 2013

Workout 13.2

I have a confession to make. I blew off workout 13.1. But tonight workout 13.2 is being announced and done by two big names in the CrossFit world, live from my box! 


13.2 Live Announcement and Demo

Classes are cancelled today as we will be hosting CrossFit HQ, Annie Thorisdottir and Lindsey Valenzuela for the live announcement and demo of Open Workout 13.2.  Ticket holders should have recieved an email yesterday with information on how the day will run and where to pick up your bracelets. Due to limited space this event is totally sold out and no additional guests will be allowed in.
We will resume a normal schedule tomorrow morning. Thank you for understanding!

We were lucky enough to snag tickets to the event and will be jammed into the gym tonight with a few hundred other people to watch two extremely strong women tackle a workout that we will all be attempting over the next few days.  So excited!!

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Do you follow the CrossFit Open? 

March 12, 2013

From Pin(terest) to Plate

Friday night we had decided to stay in, and I wanted to make something fun for dinner. I was browsing Pinterest (follow me here) for inspiration on Friday afternoon and I saw this recipe for cauliflower pizza I had pinned a while back. 


I thought it would be too time and labor intensive for a weeknight so I always put it aside. But I figured a relaxed Friday night was as good a chance as any to try it out. It turned out all we needed was a cauliflower and the toppings. Easy, 10 minutes in Whole Foods and I was set!



Sure it was a bit messy and involved to make, but we poured ourselves some wine and had a fun time trying to cram as much cauliflower as possible into our mini-food processor at a time. I made my half paleo with some sautéed onion, mushroom and spinach, olives and  artichoke hearts. The other half had gouda, sautéed onions and mushrooms and olives.  


I made a few minor changes to the recipe, two eggs instead of one, and I adjusted the spices based on what I had on hand; oregano, basil, rosemary,paprika, salt, pepper, chili flakes. Also, I think next time I would leave out the almond meal and I couldn't taste it, and I'm not sure it added to the texture at all either. 

The end result was delicious! I loved it, and M was a fan as well, which is saying something as I think this might have been the first time he willingly ate cauliflower. Ever. Overall this was a big winner and will be made again soon. 

February 27, 2013

The Barre Workout

Don’t get me wrong, I love (love!) CrossFit and its ability to keep me constantly challenged and guessing. However, sometimes I find myself craving a workout that’s a little more umm… feminine and graceful but still challenging. Not sure if that makes much sense, but I used to spend much more time doing Pilates and Yoga and I found myself missing that a bit despite trying to make it to one studio yoga class each week. Enter the barre workout.



I first tried Figure 4 over a year ago during a freebie trial. I loved it, but I simply couldn’t justify the expense. A few weeks ago I gave  The Bar Method a try with JuliaTo be completely honest this class was not my favorite. The instructor was a bit 'touchy-feely' for my taste and the music was just plain depressing. However, I left with a renewed interest in incorporating barre style classes into my routine. I spent the next several days researching which classes I could check out at various studios around the city, before coming to my senses and realizing that I could order a whole set of DVDs for about the price of one studio class.

So I turned to ever-trusty Amazon and read the reviews and descriptions on just about every set of barre method DVDs out there. I kept coming back to one of the original mainstays of the barre workout scene; Physique 57. I also read class and DVD reviews on several blogs, (check out Gina’s and Ashley’s).  After about a week of debate whether to invest in a set of DVDs when I had never taken a studio class to get a real feel for the workouts, I bit the bullet and ordered the Volume I set. Side Note: I ended up ordering from QVC as they had the best deal for the 4 DVDs and the playground ball that I found.



I have tried all the workouts and overall I am a big fan. The 30 minute ones (Express Workout, Thigh and Seat Booster, Arms and Abs) are great for squeezing in after some cardio in the morning. And the full 57 minute class was a great workout in itself the other night when I was too lazy to get to CrossFit. I do wish that they required less equipment and less space (I’ve hit various pieces of furniture numerous times) but I think this is really only an issue if you live in a small apartment. For the barre I have been using my kitchen counter or if I go down to the gym in my building I use a ledge. The ball is a nice prop but I’ve found it not totally necessary to get a good workout. Same goes with the mat and cushions. Great if you have them, but if you don’t mind the floor, you can get away without them. You do need arm weights for the full 57 minute workout. 

My only two complaints about the series: the sometimes corny commentary of the instructors and I am not a huge fan of the ‘shake-it’ section which seems to appear in every workout. But that’s just a personal preference. Overall, I am very glad I purchased this set and I forsee it getting plenty of use. I think that they provide a great workout at home and I am always a bit sore the next day! I still want to try out a few studio classes at some point, but these provide a great way to get comfortable with the moves and get a good workout in!

Have you tried any barre classes? Which are your favorites? 

February 24, 2013

Weekend Odds and Ends

The Paleo challenge I started in January has just ended but I really liked the way I felt while doing, so I am trying to stick with that way of eating as much as possible. I made this Paleo Coconut banana bread with coca powder on Saturday night and we finished it for breakfast on Sunday. (Oops!)


 I am currently contemplating making another batch tonight to have for the week, but I'm a bit scared of what we might do to it tonight. 

We are going to go see the tulip fields outside of Amsterdam on our trip in April, and I couldn't resist grabbing this bright bunch at the store yesterday. This past week I started craving spring in a big way, and these are definitely helping brighten things up a bit in our apartment.   


We don't have cable so I'm off to watch a movie with M while checking Twitter & E! Online for Oscar updates. I've seen hardly any of the movies this year, but who am I joking, a significant part of watching the Oscars is just for the gowns! 

Are you an Oscar fan? 


February 13, 2013

"The Girls"

This week is Crush week at our CrossFit box. I am not sure how other boxes do it, but my gym follows an 8 week programming cycle, which includes 6 weeks of work on a specific set of lifts, followed by a Crush week then a Back-Off week to recover and work on technique. This cycle we worked on Deadlift, Front Squat, Push Press, Low Bar Back Squat and the Snatch. The goal of every cycle is to start with a weight that you can add a few lbs to every week over the course of the cycle and end slightly higher than you did the last time you worked on that movement. As this was only my second complete cycle, I had plenty of room to grow with my lifts and hit PRs in every movementCrush week is designed to help you find or hit a new 1 rep max in the lifts and test your time and ability in some of the harder CrossFit workouts including  "The Girls" and other benchmark workouts. 


So far this week, the WOD programming has included two "Girls", Annie and Fran. Lets just say I am really, really sore. I'm already a little nervous and a lot excited to see what the rest of the week brings! 

"Annie"
50-40-30-20-10 Reps For Time Of:
Double Unders (I did 2x volume singles)
Sit-Ups

Time: 8:49
"Fran"
21-15-9 Rep rounds for time of:
Thrusters, 95/65 (I used 45lbs)
Kipping Pull-Ups (Substituted Ring Rows)

Time: 6:21

January 21, 2013

Weekend Snaps


Friday night dinner at Nobu Next Door for Restaurant Week and drinks at Anotheroom.


 Saturday strolling and errands; fresh juice and flowers. 





Saturday Paleo Potluck at the gym. These by far were the hit dish of the evening. 


Crazy hard Sunday CrossFit workout. Looks deceptively easy, but I was shot by the end of it. 


Coffee and bookshop browsing


Paleo pancakes via this recipe, topped with cinnamon apples. 


Why isn't every weekend three days?


January 18, 2013

This Week

Happy Friday! How was your week? Here are some snapshots of mine... 


I really liked this work outfit. Nothing ground-breaking but I love the black and winter white with the gold tassel necklace. Plus the turtleneck sweater was warm on a freezing cold day. Sweater and Skirt: JCrew Factory, Necklace: CWonder, Watch: Michael Koors 


Proof, that I do not in fact have a black thumb! See that green shoot? Its a new stem sprouting! My orchid is finally coming back to life after not blooming for a solid 6 months. 


Emergency morning lint roller session. Somehow a cute lint roller makes it more fun. No? 



After nearly seven months of CrossFit, I finally felt almost legit enough to purchase a shirt. Still haven't worn it to class yet, but I'll get there... baby steps. 


One downside of the Paleo challenge? I am seriously running out of ideas for things to eat. Tonight's fritatta helped disguise the fact that I am getting really, really sick of eggs. Any amazing meat-free Paleo recipes out there?! Kind of an oxymoron I know... but Help! 


M and I are going skiing in a few weeks and I was excited to find this pair of Authentic Camp Socks (their words, not mine) on sale at JCrew yesterday. I only hope they live up to my expectations as I have very cold feet!

What were some highlights of your week?