Category Archives: workouts

4 NYC Workouts I Want to Try

It’s that time.  Time to start to think about getting in shape for summer.  Sundress motivation is never lost on me.

I often find the best motivation to be trying something new.  Here are some workout classes that I’m hoping to try this spring…

CITY ROW

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I’ve always enjoyed some time spent on the erg and I’m definitely intrigued by a rowing workout in class format.  From the website: “Alternating between interval rowing and mat work, our signature 50-minute class combines high-interval sweat with low-resistance burn to scorch up to 600 calories in one session.” Price: $32/class.

FLEX STUDIOS

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For a while I thought Pilates ProWorks had closed and I was sad.  However, it looks like it has just been rebranded and made some changes.  Flex’s class line up looks great. I definitely want to try the Flex Barre and Flex TRX–I also think the studio is gorgeous! From the website: “The Barre Class that Will Make You Sweat. An intense calorie-burning, workout with an emphasis on conditioning the thighs, seat & hamstrings to make you stronger, increase your muscle tone and change your body. Set to the hottest soundtrack in the city.” Price: $38/class

EXCEED

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My good pal MeriG told me about Exceed and I’ve been meaning to check it for a while! While I don’t get to the UES very often, sometimes it’s worth the trek! Here’s what Exceed says about Exceed: “Exceed is the Ultimate Full Body Workout. Combining metabolic, strength, cardio, and interval training, the EXCEED workout will drive and inspire you to get fit, stay fit, and be
at your best every day.”  Price: $32/class

STUDIO 360

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I’ve always thought that balancing spinning with yoga or pilates would be the ultimate workout combo, Studio 360 does just that with their signature series class which includes a 40 minute cycle and 20 minutes of yoga–very high on my list of workouts to try! From the website: Signature Series. “This class will make your life even more awesome. Join us for a 40 minute indoor ride. The journey continues in the next room for a 20 minute Yoga series to integrate that energy from your cycling cardio, lengthen your muscles and strengthen your core. Yup, all that and more!” Price: $27/class

In other news, I hoping rumors that a beloved UES/UWS workout studio will make its triumphant return to the downtown area are true. :)

If ya’ll have studio or workout recommendations, send them my way!

 

7 Minute Workout-Cardio Edition

So I am guessing I might be a little late on this train, but I just found out about the “Scientific 7-Minute Workout.” If you missed it too, the full explanation of the exercise science behind the workout can be found here, but in a nutshell, this is what he 7 Minute Workout aim to achieve, according to authors Chris Jordon and Brett Klika:

To address the limitations of traditional exercise protocols and provide an effective and efficient program for our clients, one of the exercise strategies we use is high-intensity circuit training (HICT) using body weight as resistance. Our approach combines aerobic and resistance training into a single exercise bout lasting approximately 7 minutes. Participants can repeat the 7-minute bout 2 to 3 times, depending on the amount of time they have. As body weight provides the only form of resistance, the program can be done anywhere. source

Basically it’s another win for high intensity interval training! The workout is 12 exercises done for 30 seconds with 10 seconds rest in between.

With the weather this winter, I have been doing a lot of home workouts lately. I absolutely love HIIT interval workouts, I really can’t get enough. I’ve been doing the Tone it Up Love Your Body HIIT Workout pretty regularly, often paired with another TIU workout.

When I read about the 7 Minute Workout, I had to try it immediately.  Doing it once is really not a workout, maybe it could be a good workout add on. However, I did it three times with a couple of minutes rest  in between and I definitely broke a sweat.  Was it the hardest workout I have ever done? Of course not. But it’s great for a living room or hotel room workout.

However, after doing the workout a few times, I still loved the concept, but I wanted something with a little more calorie blasting potential.  It’s pretty easy to ramp up, so I created a cardio edition of the workout:

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The trick is really to make sure you are really pushing to around 80% effort to get the most out of your 7 minutes.  Also, don’t forget to rest 10 seconds between exercises and a few minutes between rounds if you are doing the circuit more than once.

There are quite a few 7 minute workout timers out there; I like this one:

I feel like doing this three times is a pretty good workout.  But let me know what you think!

Here is a  cheat sheet to the exercises:

Fly Jacks 

Wall Sit

Push Up with Clap

V-Up

Jump Squat

Jumping Lunge

Plank With Knee Jog (in a plank alternate touching your knees to the ground)

Push Up with Side Rotation

Burpees

Under Armour Workout with Natalie Uhling

The weekend just started and I feel like it’s already almost gone.  Do you every feel like that?  I hope not!  Don’t worry, there’s plenty of weekend left!

I really shouldn’t be complaining, I had Friday off–although boy did I need it.  It worked out pretty perfectly that I had already taken Friday off when Under Armour asked if I wanted to attend a workout with Natalie Uhling in their House of Innovation at Grand Central.   Of course, I said yes. UA was kind enough to send over a full outfit to wear to the event, including their new UA SpeedForm ™ shoe, which has gotten quite a bit of press for their new shoe “technology.”

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I’ve actually never owned any Under Armour, so it was fun to give it a try.  I loved the sports bra, especially as I desperately need some new ones. I’ve also been wearing the shoes pretty much non-stop since they arrive last week.

Before I talk about the workout, I want to tell you about what Under Armour’s got going on at Grand Central. They’ve completely transformed the Vanderbuilt wing; it’s absolutely worth checking out if you are in the area.  They have events going on all weekend! One of the coolest things is the models of their new Olympic speed skating uniform on display.

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They are keeping it popping throughout the weekend with a robust schedule of booths and events, including more free workouts.

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After  looking around, I headed to the workout with Natalie Uhling.  From her bio I learned that she’s taught at Barry’s Bootcamp and Soul Cycle among other well-known fitness meccas.  After the first five minutes  of the workout, I had a huge girl crush!  She is an amazing trainer! She said she has energy 24/7 and she wasn’t lying.  .We started out with a 20 minute “warm up” of intense cardio kickboxing.

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Then we moved on to 25 minutes of partner boxing. under armour3

We rounded out the hour with toning and cardio intervals.  It was WAY more intense that I expected.  I was totally spent by the end.

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I was so exhausted that I’m sure a whole lot of this was going on:

a planking how i look

 

Simply put, it was an awesome workout. I’ll definitely be looking out for the speedskating uniforms in Sochi next week! The Olympics countdown is on!

Barry’s, Birchbox and Women’s Health!

Yesterday I got to experience the intersection of beauty, fitness and overall health at a great event at Barry’s Bootcamp, sponsored by Women’s Health and Birchbox.

 

The class was your usual intense-as-hell, but hurts-so-good shenanigans. We began with speed and incline intervals on the treadmill for about 15 minutes. Next up was floor, we concentrated on biceps, triceps and shoulders and it burned! I was already a sweaty mess at this point, so I was having trouble just holding onto my weights.

Back to the treadmill.  This next section is what Barry’s is all about, pushing you to the point of no return. It was about 10 minutes of sprint/recovery, but oh my god, I could barely stand when it was over.  I managed to push it to 10.5 MPH for one of the 30 seconds sprints and I nearly collapsed face first on to the treadmill when it was over.  I seriously don’t know how people run entire marathons at speeds faster than this.

We finished we leg work using the booty bands and called it a day. By the end, I was a Barry’s believer more than ever!  This place will will kick your booty into shape! I’m going to have to splurge on more classes, especially closer to the wedding.  While the class is nothing you couldn’t do on your own at the gym, there something about great instructors like Joey who push you so much further than you would ever go by yourself.  This is what you can look forward to:

Running, Strength, Sweat

Afterwards I got to meet some of the awesome ladies who work at Women’s Health and Birchbox.  They are so fun! I can’t even believe that some of them read my little blog. I feel so honored. After the killer workout, we could relax with  manicures by the Color Club and some nice snacks by Barry’s new Fuel Bar, which just hit studios this month.

I grabbed my Birchbox and copy of Women’s Health on the way out!

I’ve given Birchbox subscriptions as gifts, so it was nice to have a box for myself.  Look at all those goodies!

In other news, one of my favorite things to write about is good fitness deals, and I think I have one for you today!

4 classes for less than $5 each.

Urban Daddy has a great deal on a classtivity four pack.  The deal is that your get to try 4 classes for only $19 at great studios around the city.   Some of my favorites on the list include:

The catch is that you have to be a new member to each studio that you use your credits at, which disqualifies me from most of the options on the list.  But if you’ve been wanting to try some boutique studios, but were hesitant because they are so pricey (I understand, $30 a class is tough!), this is a really great deal. I always like to try things out before deciding which places are worth investing in.
Happy Hump Day

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Running Playlist Winter 2013

What a sunny, snowy Saturday we have in NYC!  It’s always so bright when in snows, it makes me forget how short the winter days are!

This morning we had a date with Barry!  We got there about 15 minutes early, but true devotees apparently arrive much earlier.  I told Frank that it was probably best to do the treadmills first to get the running over with, apparently that is a popular strategy because the treadmills were gone instantly.  Hello, strength.

I grabbed 8 pound weights, in hindsight 10s would have been better.  Frank took 25s, which is just insane. This was only my second time (first time recap here), so I was expecting 15 minutes strength, 15 minutes running, 15 minutes strength, 15 minutes running.

However, after several sets of lunges with the booty bands, lots of arm work and some ab work, I started thinking, those people have been on the treadmill a LONG time.  Is this a 90 minute class?  A few minutes later, Joey announced it was a 30 on 30 off day!

Initially I wasn’t thrilled about this news, I think it’s easier mentally to get through 15 minutes on the treadmill, even if you know you have to do it twice.  However, it really wasn’t too bad.  Don’t get me wrong, there were several occasions where the last 15 seconds took everything I had and maybe a little more, but we didn’t have to go up to crazy insane speeds, topping out at 9MPH for no longer than 90 seconds. The structure was something like this…

DIY Treadmill Bootcamp (similar not identical BB):

  • 2 minute warm up at  6MPH
  • 5 minute climb (start at 7MPH and increase by .5 every minute until 9.0)
  • 1 minute recover
  • 5 minute ladder (start at 7MPH and increase by 1 MPH to 9.0 and then back down)
  • 1 minute recover
  • 5 minute climb (start at 7MPH and increase by .5 every minute until 9.0)
  • 3 minute sprint with incline (run at your top speed and increase incline to 3.0 at minute 2 and 6.0 for minute 3) x2
  • 1 minute recover
  • 90 second spring at incline of 8.0
  • 30 second recover
  • 30 second sprint

I’m definitely getting why people love Barry’s, you feel so accomplished at the end!

So back to the playlist, here is my latest. I’m definitely in love with it.

Warm Up:

Take a Walk-Passion Pit (who I saw at the Garden last night!)

Workout:

Sweet Nothing–Calvin Harris

Locked out of Heaven--Bruno Mars

Don’t Stop the Party–Pitbull (really love this for a good push)

C’Mon-Ke$ha

Thrift Shop–Macklemore and Ryan Lewis

Scream & Shout–Will.i.am (can I just say, thank god for Britney Bitch?)

Don’t You Worry Child–Swedish House Mafia

I Knew You Were Trouble–Taylor Swift <–Favorite T Swizzle song of all time

Beauty and a Beat–Justin Bieber feat Nicki Minaj

Ho Hey–Lumineer

Cool Down:

Suit and Tie–JT

 

Revolve Fitness-the New Spin on the Block

Hello!  I just got back from a fun weekend in Atlantic City!  We arrived back just in time to catch the coldest days of winter so far!  Brrrr.

As you may know, I live downtown.  I love downtown. It feels real to me.  As much as I love and worship Central Park,  I’ll always be a downtown girl at heart. Lucky for me, the Union Square area is currently prime real estate for boutique fitness studios.  New spinning, barre, and pilates places seem to be opening their doors every week.

Revolve was an exciting addition to the Union Square spinning scene, which currently houses Soul Cycle and Flywheel. I was excited to check it out the new comer.

The studio is sleek and new with one large spinning room with about 48 bikes off the lobby and a full locker and changing area downstairs.  The one thing to remember is that the locker area is co-ed, so make sure to change in the bathrooms. I may or may not have noticed the obvious sign clarifying the rules the first time around. blush.

The first class I took was the real ride, which is your standard 45 minute ride. It was a bit of a blur because I arrived a little late and was totally flustered trying to get my shoes in the clips.  I require like 3 minutes a foot to get each shoe in the darn clip! I left feeling like I had a great workout, but it was a little too short. Like the Rip Ride that’s 60 minutes would have been perfect.

Last week I took the Body Ride.  The instructor Heidi was really great.  She said all the right things, gave really clear cues and had a rocking soundtrack that made me grin from ear to ear (check it out below!). The real ride was a series of hills and sprint intervals with a mini strength section with weights in the middle. The break for strength gave us enough of a break to really push it in the second half of the class.  I liked that Heidi also reminded us that we were almost done and had nothing left to save for.

Overall, I like Revolve. It has a neighborhoody, casual feel to it. The staff is really friendly.  It doesn’t have quite the intensity of Flywheel and it doesn’t feel as competititve, but Revolve gives you a great workout if you are willing to push it.  I had hoped it was a little cheaper than the other studios, but they all end up being about the same (once you factor in renting shoes).  That’s the thing about boutique studios in NYC, they are all almost exactly $30-32, it’s almost uncanny.

I look forward to trying out some of Revolve’s specialty classes, like their request and mosh up classes. As well as some of their celeb instructor classes! There community initiatives seem very strong, so I am excited to see what’s to come.

Here is Heidi’s killer playlist! It really made the class for me!

10000 Lovers-IDA Maria

Catch My Breath Remixes-Kelly Clarkson

Stereo Hands-White Panda

Gangstar Trippin--Fat Boy Slim

Coming Home Part 2-Skylar Grey

Back in the Habit

I’m finally feeling pretty much 100% again.  Life has so much more vigor when you’re healthy! I’m really to get back into my routine. Everyone is a little more dedicated this time of year, so I have lots of workout buddies to keep me motivated! I’ve got a busy few months coming up, so planning my workouts and making workout dates really helps!

Here’s a look at my planned schedule for the week:

Monday: 15 Minute Workout Circuit (Got stuck at office)+Biggest Loser Challenge

Tuesday: Core Fusion Barre

Wednesday: Refine

Thursday: Run/Yoga (if I’m sore)

Friday: Spinning at Revolve

Saturday: Uplift Workit Circuit

Sunday: Hotel Gym Workout (I’ll be in Atlantic City!)

BIGGEST LOSER CHALLENGE

Last night Frank upped the ante on our “Biggest Loser Challenge.” I think it’s kind of funny that the show is 2 HOURS, when it promotes being active and getting off the couch!  That’s why we started doing biggest loser challenges during the show. Every week, we’ll add on!

This week:

100 Sit Ups

100 Push Ups

100 Squats

2 Minute Plank

*We don’t do the exercises consecutively! I did 10 sets of push ups, but they were all straight leg!

Great Fitness Challenges to Ring in the New Year

A few years ago, 30 Day Shred was all the New Year’s rage. There’s nothing like a good fitness challenge when motivation is high.  I  definitely want a new goal as I start the year to keep me commited.  This year, quite a few of my favorite studios are offering some pretty good options…

THE ULTIMATE UPLIFT CHALLENGE! 

As you know, I have a little  obsession with Uplift right now.  I love the sound of their January challenge. But it’s hard to justify spending an extra $200 on myself this time of year!  Maybe if I can put my gym membership on hold… Anywho, I love the idea of healthy competition, check out the details (via uplift)…

Get those New Year’s Resolutions to actually stick this year by committing NOW to make it happen. The more you set your intention and take action, more you can accomplish.  So join us for the Ultimate UpliftChallenge and special deal* beginning January 2, 2013 and let’s make this the best year ever! Here’s how it works:

*Attend your choice of at least 3 classes a week for the month of January.  

*Everyone who accomplishes that gets one complimentary class at the end of the month to keep up the great work! 

*The client who attends the MOST classes in the month of January gets a complimentary 5-PACK of classes!

You can sign up right now HERE. Click “BUY”, Studio Classes – 55 Minutes and choose “Ultimate UpliftChallenge.”  *Cost is $198 for unlimited classes in the month of January.  Class sign ups are open two weeks in advance.YOU MUST SIGN UP BY MIDNIGHT on DECEMBER 21ST to participate. 

This challenge will use social media to help you track your progress. We all love a little #fitfluential accountability :).

THE REFINE RESOLUTION CHALLENGE

While I’ll try and stop whining about the downtown Refine closing (okay, I’ll try to whine less), this challenge is a great deal with lots of flexibility. If only my local studio would magically reopen (okay, okay, enough, I get it).

Here’s how it works:

  • Sign up for a program of full-body, circuit style workouts using Refine’s exclusive equipment system–a blend of cardio, strength, and mobility like nothing else. 
  • Commit to a one month class goal that’s right for you
  • Raise the bar on your goal every month for up to three months                       
  • Earn free classes along the way–up to $192 value!

Need more incentive? Challenge participants pay only $20 a class! That’s almost 40% off! 

Find out more at the Refine Resolution Challenge and sign up now!

Revolve $99 Introductory Month

Revolve just opened, so changes are you still qualify for their $99 Intro Month. (unlimited rides for 30 days) that is a steal for spin fanatics. I am trying the 60 Minute Rip Ride on Friday, so I’ll let you know what I think!

Not in NYC?  Short on cash (don’t worry, I get it!)?

Here are some other great ways to work it out from now through the New Year.

Physique 57 Online Videos

Wow, my favorite barre studio and workout dvd producer now offers workout videos online!  This is a great way to get a taste of the glory before committing to a purchase.  Physique also regularly posts monthly challenges through their Facebook page, so check it out! Plus, right now they are linked to a fun DJ Earworm mash up, so you never know what gems you will find.

TONE IT UP TUESDAYS

I love Tone it Up Girls Tuesday workouts.  I do them whenever I am short on time.  You definitely have to do them a few times to get a full workout, but they pack a lot into 5-10 minutes :). Plus, they are so damn fun…even if I do get jealous of all the malibu sun.

FITNESSISTA DAMN GIRL WORKOUT

I am sure my neighbors hated me after I did this one, but it’s a great living room workout. Very little room and only dumbbells required.  The Fitnessista knows here way around a workout :).

What’s your fitness goal this new years?

Barry’s Bootcamp Review

I really don’t know how I waited so long to try Barry’s Bootcamp.  A trendy, cardio/strength, celebrity favorite workout? Sounds right up my alley!

Fortunately, Well and Good came through with an awesome opportunity to try it out!  As I waited anxiously for the class to start, I took a sneak peek at the studio.  There were treadmills along the walls and lots of steps on the floor…hmmm running and step aerobics? I was quickly assured that I would WISH it was step aerobics. The atmosphere was dark and intense with lots of colored lights beaming down on the equipment.

After a few minutes of browsing the super cute clothing for sale, it was time to get my booty kicked.

We divided between floor and treadmill, and I decided the floor would be a safe start.  After grabbing a pair of 8 pound weights, I got myself set up at the step.

Our instructor, Joey, started off by yelling commands to the “treaders” and then he got us going with weights. I am not sure if I’ve ever seen a class where the instructor is leading two entirely different groups at the same time, but it seemed to work. I was able to follow along whether I was on the floor or on the treadmill.  After about 12 minutes of bicep curls, squats, shoulder presses and lunges and a final round of all moves put together, I was on to the treadmills.

The first round  on the treadmill was all about speedwork.  We were told to increase and decrease our speeds to jog, run or sprint accordingly. It was great to have someone really push me, and demand I go faster and longer than I would on my own.  I was shocked to run as high as 9.5 MPH.  That may be the fastest I’ve ever run on treadmill.  But for the record, the girl next to me was running at 12.5 and it looked like an easy jog to her. I didn’t even know treadmills went above 12MPH!

After just under 15 minutes of intervals it was back to the floor for round 2.  This time we had a handy booty band that was a stretchy rubber cord that was secured to each ankle.  The next set focused on the legs with donkey kicks and hydrant lifts. Some of this reminded me of a barre class with more resistance.  We finished off with a brief set of abs.

Back on the treadmill, we played with incline and speed. This set we were allowed more walk recoveries.  To be honest, I wish I had jogged through more of them, but I was saving a little because thought there would be a third round.  Even so, I pushed enough to know I would be SORE in the following days. True to prediction, my legs definitely feel the class today.

My overall assessment is that Barry’s is a great workout. It’s a good combo of strength and cardio and they really make you workout like you mean it.  The instructors really get you to push further than you think you can, in fact, they demand it.  I think it’s a good workout for men and women, but you’d want to go consistently to really see results—approximately 3-5 times a week depending on what else you are doing.

Overall, I was pretty impressed with Barry’s.  I think that due to the size of the class, a second instructor in the class might have made sure everyone’s form was perfect, but I did get several corrections throughout the class even with only one instructor.

This could definitely be my new thing. It’s around the same cost as most boutique classes ($32), so I’ll be on the look out for groupons and sales to make it a little more affordable.  Like any good class, Barry’s has no problem filling up, so you’ll want to make sure to book early to get a spot!

FitFluential: Let’s Do This!

Thanks so much for all the great comments on my More Half Marathon recap.  Clearly Frank’s signs were the real heroes. I merely ran 13 miles, but the signs, they got the people goin’!

It’s been good few weeks. I’ve got to run the More Half Marathon as one of Athelta’s sponsored athletes.  I attended several fun fitness events at Equinox.  And yesterday, I was invited to be a FitFluential Ambassador! It’s a huge honor and amazing opportunity, and I really couldn’t be more excited. Let’s Do This!

I haven’t done this in a while, but I wanted to share some fun fitness opportunities!

Surfset Fitness!

SurfSET Fitness

The fun pop up of Surfset Fitness at Chelsea Market ends this month.  So many of the best fitness instructors in the city are hosting classes there, I have to try it before the month is up! There’s everything from bootcamps to yoga classes on the board! Kristen McGee, Chanelle from Physique and Emily from Refine will all be there!

Body By Simone

I was psyched to see this in Well and Good!  Body by Simone is open for business in NYC! It’s a cardio dance workout that channels Tracey Anderson—aka burns major calories.  However, unlike ol Trac, who doesn’t want rif raf like me, BBS is open to all.  At $35 a class, the cost is pretty much in line with boutique fitness studios.

NYC Marathon Registration!

Marathon Header

If you are thinking of entering the NYC Marathon lotto, you only have a couple days!  Entry closes on April 23rd!

Nike Women’s Marathon San Francisco.

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This was my first marathon was an incredible experience and I would definitely recommend it!  There is Tiffany’s, there is the golden gate bridge, there is a coat check at Mile 3  and there is chocolate! There random drawing entry closes SOON!  April 20th!  So if you’re interested, enter here! If you have any questions about the race, let me know!

Exhale Core Fusion 30 Day Sculpt

Exhale: Core Fusion - 30 Day Sculpt [DVD]

A new Exhale video has arrived.  This one is cool because it is a 30 day program. Each week there is six 20 minute workouts that blend segments from all the previous videos, plus a rest day. There are a total of 30 different 20 minute workouts! Sounds pretty cool, I haven’t tried it, but I am intrigued for sure!