Tagged "Workouts"

Our Williamsburg Guide: Where to Workout & Refuel

Posted by Amina AlTai on

It feels like the last decade of my life has been an odyssey of amazing fitness locals, healthy eateries and game-changing healers.  But what's the point of frequenting awesome fitness studios and watering-holes if we're not going to share them, right?  SO...we're going to start sharing our happiest and healthiest spots around the neighborhood, city and country!  Starting with my very own 'hood, Williamsburg.  For volume one, it's all about where to sweat and then refuel.  

Favorite Studios:

Modo Yoga for Hot Yoga: If you're looking for an epic sweat sesh in a room that is as pristine and architectural as it is Zen, head to Modo Williamsburg.  Brighter, bigger and, well, fancier than their West Village outpost, hoards of hungover Brooklynites head to this heated wellness bastion every day to sweat out their toxins, and we think you should too.  Our fave?  The 60-minute class with music is always a good time.  Get there early though, the rooms have a tendency to get packed.  
The Living Room Brooklyn for highly personalized small group workouts that pack a punch: Founder, Erica Romano, wanted to create an atmosphere where local fitness-seekers could get their workout on but in a small group setting.  As a result, you can expect tons of personal attention to ensure you're form is on-point and that you're getting the most out of your workout.  A one-stop-shop for all your wellness needs, The Living Room Brooklyn offers a variety of classes from pilates, to HIIT, to "coredio" so there really is something for everyone.  And if that wasn't awesome enough, you can also get massage and nutrition coaching on site.  Hell yeah!  We love the "Inner Olympian" and "Not Your Momas Pilates" for quality toning and shaping that also gets your heart rate up.  
Sync Studio—Spin.  HIIT. Yoga. Repeat:  Sync Studio really has figured out the perfect workout trifecta.  Need good cardio?  Come spin with us!  Hips are tight from spin? Come to yoga with us! Need full-body toning?  We've got HIIT for that.  A neighborhood vibe with seriously forward-thinking classes, this local boutique fitness center is definitely one I frequent often.  We love interval circuit with Geneva Simms.  It's the perfect balance of "so hard I know I'm getting a good workout" but "not so hard I never want to come back" and all delivered in the kindest and most supportive way thanks to Geneva. 
CKO Kickboxing—For a calorie torching workout: This no-frills kickboxing gym will seriously kick you a$$. I made the mistake of brining a few fitness newbies to their Saturday morning class and won't do that again.  With hour-long classes of bag work coupled with floor exercises ranging from the dreaded burpee, to jump squats and crunches, it's no wonder you reportedly burn up to 800 calories an hour.  We love that every class starts with jump rope to get your heart rate up from the get-go.
Healthy Places to Eat:
Bliss Cafe—For veggie bowls piled high with goodness and flavor: This is one of my favorite spots on the rapidly changing Bedford and if I'm ordering in, it's usually from this place.  Their hand-written menu and hole-in-the-wall vibe are part of their charm, but it's their clean plates of decadent veggies and sauces that keep me coming back.  My favorite is the bliss bowl (steamed veggies, seaweed, sweet potato & brown rice with the most delicious dressings around) usually served up with a side of sass, but it's worth it for their epic plant-based yummies.  
Champs—For healthy bites and healthy cheats: A Brooklyn institution, this healthy spot serves up incredible salads and bowls for the vegans and non-vegans in the area.  Jonesing for an awesome salad or veggie bowl? They've got you covered!  Got your kids in tow and need something of the pancake variety?  They've got that too.  Want a pre or post workout smoothie loaded with goodness?  Yup!  We're partial to the Kitchen Sink Salad and Breakfast Burrito.  
The Bean—For creative smoothies & smoothie bowls:  I might be partial to this place because it's so conveniently close to my apartment, but their smoothies and bowls seriously rock.  Packed full of vegan protein, these bad boys are as creative in flavor as they are in name.  We love the Smooth and the Naughty and their ability to customize for us food allergy folks.  Plus, if you're ever in need of a quick nosh, they also serve up healthy vegan treats like bliss balls and protein bites.  Yes, please!
El Beit—For their turmeric lattes and homemade mylks:  Perhaps the friendliest spot Billyburg has to offer, I've never been greeted with anything other than the biggest most sincere welcome.  Plus, for those of us that are sensitive to caffeine or lovers of all things healthy, their Golden Milk Chai is spectacular.  It's served with their homemade nut mylks which are unsweetened and smooth as silk.  This is one of our favorite spots to hang out with a laptop in one hand and delicious beverage in the other.  
Modern Love—For beautifully presented vegan comfort food:   This relatively new (September '16) eatery is serving up all our childhood faves but with a clean and elegant twist.  Think mac and cheese, BBQ ribs and Caesar salads gone vegan but with all the flavor and flair of something much less healthy. Service is spectacular and you can even get seasonal kombucha on tap or a glass full of your fave wine—pick your poison.   This is our new go-to for an impressive healthy spot you can wow your health-cynic-friends with.  
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Seven Fitspo Accounts to Follow Now

Posted by Julia McVeigh on

Resolving to sweat, stretch, swim, and spin more in 2017? Good for you! But if you’re like us, you won’t just need a pair of new sneakers to get you geared up – you’ll need some serious exercise motivation, too. Luckily, the world of Instagram is a treasure trove of fitness-focused women whose accounts can help you to get inspired. From yogis to weight lifters, we’re sharing some of our favorites ahead.


If you love doing a different workout every day… @hannahbronfman


The ultimate Renaissance woman, Hannah Bronfman seemingly does it all: She’s a hardcore fashion plate, jet-setting DJ, serious wellness entrepreneur, and overall girl boss. Fittingly, her feed showcases her ever-changing workouts, which include everything from Beyoncé dance classes to reformer Pilates. Follow her if you’re the type of person who gets restless doing the same exercises day-in and day-out – or if you want to achieve a killer booty.


If you dream in “befores” and “afters”… @kayla_itsines

A photo posted by Kayla Itsines (@kayla_itsines) on


Arguably the “OG” fitspo account, Kayla Itsines is the founder of the #BBG – aka beach body goals – workout plans. Kayla’s workouts can be conducted anywhere, thus emphasizing an inclusive, “anyone can do it” attitude. The proof? The jaw-dropping transformations she shares of the thousands of women who have participated in her program. We dare you to not dream of your “after” pic.


If you want to exercise with someone who feels like your BFF… @toneitup

A video posted by Tone It Up (@toneitup) on


Trainers Karena Dawn and Katrina Scott are the sunny forces behind Tone it Up, a fitness lifestyle brand that emphasizes a strong sense of community as much strong glutes. On their feed, they share serious training tips and techniques… along with plenty of not-so-serious LOL content. (They also support “Wine Wednesdays,” thus fully cementing their status as BFF-worthy.)


If you picture yourself starring in Swan Lake… @balletbeautiful


Mary Helen Bowers of Ballet Beautiful (which is also a New York City-based dance studio) is arguably the poster child for the “ballet body”: She’s long, lean, and lithe. Her feed showcases her enviably toned form, plus features an array of ballet-inspired workouts. At best, she’ll get you to start sweating at the barre; at worst, she’ll inspire you to improve that posture!


If you’re all about weight training… @kaisafit

A video posted by Kaisa Keranen (@kaisafit) on


While the gazelle-like physiques of ballerinas are absolutely inspiring, we also respect a woman who isn’t afraid to pack on the muscle. For those of you who find inspiration in cut triceps and chiseled abs, look no further than Kaisa Keranen’s account. While she tends to switch things up a bit, her feed is filled with some serious Cross Fit-esque weight lifting. Get ready to get your bench press on.


If you love all things Gwynnie and goop… @tracyandersonmethod


Ain’t no shame in being a Gwyneth Paltrow fan – after all, the woman runs a veritable wellness empire, is BFFs with Mario Batali, and is proof that even after two kids you can have a totally rockin’ body. That’s largely due to her trainer, the now-famous Tracy Anderson. Tracy’s feed features snippets of her slightly grueling (but totally transformative) mat-based workouts, plus some pretty amazing before-and-after photos.


If you’re looking to down dog all month long… @yoga_girl

A photo posted by Rachel Brathen (@yoga_girl) on


With two million followers and counting, Rachel Brathen of Yoga Girl has earned her status as a go-to Instagram yogi – and rightfully so. Her feed blends thoughtful pieces of wisdom, perfectly executed (but not intimidating) poses, and inspiring time-lapsed yoga sequences. She also happens to be pregnant right now – mamas-to-be, take note!

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3 Simple Ways to Make Working Out as Fun as Going Out

Posted by Amina AlTai on

As much as we love feeling good in our own skin (and let's be real, looking good in our fave swim suit) sometimes, working out is the pits. And no matter how much you amp yourself up, you'd rather just nextflix and chill. Sometimes we need a fitness miracle to snap us out our funk. But if working out felt like going out, we be racing to the treadmill like it was a sale at Lululemon. Here are a few of my fave coaching tips to get you from coach-surfing to curls in no time at all.

Make a killer playlist

We all have that one awesome playlist on our phone, usually saved under GNO. Well, dust it off and put it on full blast! Music has the power to alter our moods. In fact, new research suggests that even sad music can lift our moods and get us motivated. So crank up the tunes!  P.S A great set of headphones, like these uber cool ones above, doesn't hurt either)

Workout with a friend

We've heard this before, but it really works.  Those who start a new workout routine with a partner, are 40% more likely to stick to the routine than those who go it alone.  Friends don't let friends lose muscle mass.

Find a workout you love

It's true of jobs and workouts, find something you love and it will never be work.  If you hate running, don't do it.  If you're flexible and love yoga, you can find a balanced routine within that.  If strength training gives you a rise, find a local facility that specializes in that.  The best way to find one or two or even three workouts you love, is to try a variety first.  Getting a free pass to a local gym to try classes or even using ClassPass is a great way to test out a variety before committing.

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