Next Stop: Israel

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Off to the land of (dairy-free) milk & honey, falafel and camels I go!

Follow along with my travels on twitter and instagram… and see you when I get back :)

Job Love + Israel + Lately

Hi guys! I’m still here, I promise!

I feel like I’ve got a million things to say, and yet nothing to say at the same time. It’s now been 1 months since I started working full time (WOOT WOOT!) and it’s been busier than I expected, but also more awesome than I expected at the same time. The weeks go by surprisingly fast and I’m actually kind of grateful to be inside, away from the brutal NYC summer heat all day.

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Job love: supporting our amazing CEO/ co-founder Payal at her dance company’s show.

 

Since upping my hours to full time and starting my new role as the social media and marketing manager, my own “personal” social media schtuff has been put on the back burner. I’ve definitely heard this form other bloggers that also work in social media, it can be hard to come home after writing blog posts for work all day and say “hey I’m going to blog now for myself”. I’m going on vacation (sort of) next week so lately all of my blogging willpower has been devoted to the work blog since I had to compile a lot of content in a short period of time.

I can’t complain though, I have serious job love and that love somehow continues to get bigger and bigger. It’s exciting to be managing social media things from another, larger, standpoint. While I like to think my own twitter account is mucho important in it’s own way (it’s how I got my job in the first place!), seeing the impact social media can make from a company’s perspective has been super cool.

I was out to dinner this week with two of my closest friends and were talking about hobbies and what we do after work to pass the time. I realized I haven’t had much “free” time… most nights have been spent going out to dinner with friends, trapeze-ing, working out or seeing a show of some sort. During the school year I felt so guilty doing all those things at night because there was always this lurking feeling that I should be studying, and now that that’s over I’ve been taking advantage of those free nights.

 

In other news… I’m going to Israel NEXT WEEK. When did that creep up on me? Many of you probably know about birthright (and if you’re Jewish you definitely know about birthright because your grandma will not. stop. talking. about. it). It’s basically a free trip to Israel for anyone who’s Jewish and between the ages of 18-26. Yes, it does sound too good to be true, but it’s for real! I’ve been trying to go on Birthright since I turned 18 and ultimately decided to wait until I was older so I could go on a trip with 22-26 year olds. No offense college kiddies. I applied a few times and the dates never worked out… but this time it’s really really happening and I’m really really going to Israel on Wednesday. Holy crap.

 

And I’m currently sipping on this. IMG_4662
It’s beastly hot out right now and I was dripping with sweat after walking from a meeting in Soho back home to the Village (I know, it’s not even a long walk…) While I enjoy juices from time to time, the smoothies at Jus have a special place in my heart because they are cool and refreshing. Current favorite combo: spinach, pineapple and banana. Tastes like heaven on a hot day.

Happy Fourth of July weekend everyone :)

4 New-To-Me Classes

Core Fusion Extreme @ Exhale Spa Flatiron

Not only was I excited to hear Exhale was opening up a studio not too far away from my apartment, but I was also ridiculously pumped to try their newest class “Core Fusion Extreme”. I will admit, going into the class I thought “pshhh how extreme can this be” and let me tell you, it lived up to the name.

The class is comprised of 5 stations with 2 exercises at each station. During a circuit you go through those two exercises twice before moving onto the next station (ya follow?). The exercises were a mixture of cardio moves and strength training– box jumps, tricep dips, TRX rows, thrusters, funky plank variations, and more.

Exhale may be known for it’s slow burn barre classes, but like I said this class lived up to it’s name and got me sweating. I may or may not have signed up for another class at another studio that day as well… and deeply regretted this decision afterwards.

My biggest complaint was that the entire class was just the circuit. We went through the stations twice meaning each exercise was done 4 times. Overall the class still offered a fantastic workout and I think Exhale is on to something good.

 

Tone House

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I can’t remember the last time a class was as hyped up for me as Tone House was. Anytime someone from work took a class there they came back looking like they got hit by a bus. This is really only a slight exaggeration, and I swear everyone talked about how hard it was. Keep in mind I work with people who love going to fitness classes as much as I do…

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I was legit scared before this class since apparently it’s the hardest class in Manhattan. The ominous music that played as we waited for my 7AM class to start sure didn’t help either (okay maybe that’s what they were going for…).

Is it the hardest class in Manhattan? Maybe. Or at least the warmup is. Owner Alonzo had us jumping over these mini hurdles in every plane of motion imaginable. I like to think I’m decently fit but this warmup made me suck wind like I was doing the mile run in high school all over again. The person behind me ended up cutting in front of me in the middle of the warmup, that  kind of bruised my ego.

The actual class wasn’t as challenging as  the warm up. Yes, we did get to use those super cool bungee cords shown above. We also used the TRX Rip trainer which I haven’t touched since I took the rip trainer certification course over a year ago.

What made the workout doable was Alonzo’s encouraging demeanor. His class might be terrifying but he’s incredibly sweet. It’s billed as a class for athletes and that’s absolutely accurate.

When a friend asked me about class after I described it as humbling and that’s just what it was.

 

Barione @ Bari

A class that has you dancing, jumping on a trampoline, and using bungee cords? Count me in. Barione is the prerequisite class you have to take at Bari Studio before trying out their other classes. I wasn’t sure what to expect from a prerequisite class and am happy to say it still packs a burn (and quite the sweat) while giving you a nice taste of what Bari has to offer.

I particularly loved the sweaty cardio dance warm up comprised of super simple dance steps strung together and repeated and of course loved jumping on the trampolines later in class.

 

Throwback Fitness

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Why did it take me so long to finally workout with the Throwback Fitness guys? I met Ryan and Brian earlier this spring at a work event and fell in love with Throwback Fitness before I even took a class. The class is a mixture of a team workout and high school phys ed nostalgia complete with nerf guns and a dodgeball game. But of course there was a fitness twist to all the games.

The first half was a partner workout, while one partner rowed the other partner worked through a few strength movements before switching. Each pair was competing with the other pairs to row the most meters. I’m vaguely convinced that being short is a major disadvantage on the rowing machine…

Part two was dodgeball. In order to grab a dodgeball you had to perform a series of exercises– and if you got pegged you had to do push ups to get back in the game.

Truth, the only time I ever skipped class in high school was this one time senior year when I didn’t want play dodgeball in gym. Of course I ran into my teacher later that day and she asked where I was… I told her the truth and her response was “Oh I understand, I hate dodgeball too”. And I still got a perfect grade that semester- Bam.

Any who, I enjoyed this version of dodgeball a lot more that I did during my high school days.

My first thought after class was oh my god I need to bring my brother and boyfriend here, they would LOVE it. It’s a pretty awesome workout with a fun flair to it. Bonus points: The guys send a personalized email after class thanking you for coming. How’s that for customer service?

 

When’s the last time you took a new fitness class? 

So You Wanna Run a Half Marathon

Running a 10K this weekend made me realize I kind of love the half marathon distance, who woulda thunk? It’s a great and pretty attainable goal for runners to work up to since it won’t completely monopolize your life. I like to think of it as a challenging but doable distance with the proper training.

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So ready to start training for a half marathon? Here are my tips:

- Build up your distance. If you don’t have a solid base of being able to run 3 miles I highly recommend starting off with couch to 5k to get you up and running. From there you can work your way up to a half marathon training plan without feeling like you bit off more than you can swallow.

– Be realistic about the time it will take to train. A typical training plan is 10-12 weeks for someone who already is already comfortable running 3 miles. Leave yourself enough time to put in the proper amount of training.

– Get fitted for running shoes. When it comes to running, any old shoe won’t do. You want to head to a store that specifically fits for running shoes (in NYC the popular ones are Jack Rabbit, City Sports and Paragon) to analyze your specific gait while running. The right shoe can help steer you away from injury and will also make running a whole lot more enjoyable.

I personally don’t like to wear my running shoes for anything except running or very running heavy bootcamp classes.

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– Pick a race and research it out. Google search blog recaps—is the course hilly? Good for first timers? Is there a special theme or something unique about it? I chose The Diva Half Marathon as my first for a few reason. One, my good friend was running it and already booked a hotel room, it was easy to get to from the city, the course was pretty flat, and you got a tiara and boa at mile 11. SOLD.

There’s a lot of factors that go into choosing a race so research your options to find the best one for you. Find one that gets you excited to run whether it’s because you’ll be with friends, you’ll get to travel somewhere unique, or you’ll get to run your own city in an epic race.

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– Cross train, cross train, cross train.  Yes it’s important to run while training for a running race, but it’s also important to work out the muscles you don’t hit while running to not only keep you injury free but also make you better, faster, stronger. I’m not a running pro but I usually aim for 2 days of strength training and 1 day of cycling while training for a race. Pilates, barre and yoga classes are also great low impact ways to cross train since they are low impact and running is a lot of pounding the pavement.

– Enjoy it. One of the most amazing things about training for your first half is hitting little bench marks like the first time you run 5 miles without stopping or that moment when you say holy moly I conquered my first double digit run. All those little things are pretty awesome and of course so is crossing that finish line!

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Ever run a half marathon– what advice would you give to someone who wants to to training for a half?