Workout Tips

Things I Love About ClassPass

JUMPSTART YOUR FITNESS WITH CLASSPASS
JUMPSTART YOUR FITNESS WITH CLASSPASS

I'm only halfway through my first month with ClassPass but there's already so much that I love! In just two weeks I've been to three different fitness studios and feel like I've really broadened my horizons! I finally tried reformer pilates (loved it) and, I've been to yoga and cycling, two types of classes I love but don't get a chance to do very often.

JourneYoga (http://www.journeyoga.com/): This is a new yoga studio in Columbia Heights (Arlington) near where I live. I went to the 7am class last Friday and it was great - very laid back; the instructor encouraged participants to just do what feels right, which was perfect for me since I hadn't been to yoga in quite sometime! Plus, it was a 7am class so I was hardly awake! The studio is really cute and the instructor was wonderful! All and all, I liked the class and wouldn't mind going back!

Screen Shot 2014-11-17 at 10.52.13 PM
Screen Shot 2014-11-17 at 10.52.13 PM

My Thrive Pilates (http://mythrivepilates.com/): There's two My Thrive locations -- I went to the one in Shirlington (Arlington) and really fell in love with the studio, the practice, and the people! It was really different, but fun and full or so many new and interesting moves. I was nervous but there were only six people in the class and everyone was incredibly friendly. The instructor was really nice, too. She was very gentle with her commands and in correcting my form. She definitely made me feel at ease! I also felt like I worked muscles I don't often think think about, like my inner and outer thighs, and there was a lot of core work! My abs were burning! The hour long class flew by and I was kind of sad it was over so soon! I definitely plan to get back to Thrive before the month is up!

My Thrive Pilates - Shirlington
My Thrive Pilates - Shirlington

Revolve (https://www.revolvefitness.com/): CYCLING!! I used to go spin at Sport & Health religiously. The instructor was from Miami, had the best music, and I always left on such a high! The instructor at Revolve has the same high energy. The flow was great - some hills, some speed, and a lot of pushing yourself for another 15 - 10 - 5 seconds left! The only bummer was that I had to pay for shoes ($2) and couldn't take my phone in the spin room to snap a pic for you guys! I also didn't think the people were as friendly as a lot of other studios I've been too, but it was definitely a good workout nonetheless.

Revolve Fitness
Revolve Fitness

So, how has all this been possible? CLASSPASS!!! What I'm loving about it:

+I can schedule all my classes right from there website - I don't have to go to the studio's website, signup with them or do anything except click 'reserve' on ClassPass. Then I just show up, say I signed up via ClassPass and volia, I'm in!

+Reminders: I love getting reminders! They come right after I sign-up and the the day before to remind me I have a class to attend. I'm pretty busy so these are nice!

ClassPass Reminder
ClassPass Reminder

I also love that they provide a little insight about what to expect, such as that I may have to rent shoes if I don't bring my own and not to show up late!

+The $20 cancellation fee is serious incentive! I started to think about not going to Pilates after work on Thursday (you know how it goes after a long day at work), but knowing I would have to fork over $20 because I didn't cancel with 24 hours really motivated me to get there! And then of course I was glad I went!

+I can signup the day of, the day before or a full week in advance! I love that the interface is such that I can search today, tomorrow, or next week for classes! Just now as I was sitting here I signed up for a 10 am class tomorrow (it's 5pm). Signing up for classes with such ease is great.

+Searching for classes is SO easy and it's motivating! I literally scroll through all the options, asking myself, hmmm what am I in the mood for?!

ClassPass Class Search
ClassPass Class Search

+I can workout with my friends all over town. I've had two friends -- one in Georgetown and one in Maryland -- say we should get together for a workout and because of ClassPass, we can! The one in Georgetown has a few classes saved up at Barre3 -- I would usually hesitate to go there and have to pay the drop-in fee for a single class, but guess what? Barre3 is a participating gym so my class is already paid for! That means I'm that much more likely to get together with my friend for a workout! Same goes for the friend in Maryland!

I really hate to gush about a subscription like this, but I really love it. I think it's also a great solution for people who maybe in a workout rut and need to switch things up, find something new they like, and just get re-motivated to workout more.ClassPasswill motivate you and it'll make working out EASY. It's literally the click of a button - "reserve."

I highly recommend signing up for ClassPass and giving it a try if you need a little boost to your workout routine. There's classes ALL over the area and you'll surely find something that fits for you!

Do you think you'd enjoy ClassPass? 

What new fitness classes have you tried lately?

Disclosure: ClassPass provided me with a one-month subscription free to sample the service and blog about my experience, but as always, the opinions expressed here are my own. 

Refresh Your Workout Regime: How to Plan Ahead

refresh-your-workout-regime-how-to-plan-ahead
refresh-your-workout-regime-how-to-plan-ahead

This is part of my monthly mantra series for October: Out with the old, in with the new! 

I once heard that 80 percent of our day is driven by habit; did you believe that?

I do. It sounds cliche but sometimes I really do feel like I'm 'just going through the motions,' in life. I wake up, get dressed, brush my teeth, drive to work, work... all without much thought at all!

The problem is that going through the motions often means perpetuating habits-- both good and bad. You know, like if you stop by Starbucks on the way to work everyday... that's awesome the first few days but then, it starts to add up and your bank account is suffering! Or, getting stuck at your desk all day, meaning to get to the gym (maybe even thinking you ought to go!), but not quite getting there. Days turn into weeks and the habit of going is no longer a habit; not going is!

It's funny because we often know this is happening when it occurs-- I should go to the gym! I shouldn't stop by Starbucks, but what happens? Habit wins out! But then maybe one day, BAM! You change it up -- you make it to the gym! You opt for water instead of coffee in the morning. You finally get to that yoga class you've been wanting to startup again or check out the CrossFit gym near your house.

It feels so good, right? Change!! Glorious change!

It's right there, guys. Right at our finger tips (I'm talking to myself here, too!)... it's just a matter of grabbing hold of it-- waking up from our slumber of bad habits and routines and taking charge of our schedule!

One of the easiest and most effective ways to do this? A little planning. Instead of just wishing and hoping you'll make it to the gym and thinking you ought to go, make a plan to go.

Pull out a little notebook or the notes in your iPhone and type it out! 

Ask yourself, 'how do I want to spend my weekend? What I do really want to do?'

This one simple trick that makes a huge difference! I know because I've been testing it out this past week and I'm getting there -- I'm finally getting back to the gym (though, I'm still stopping by Starbucks, Haha).

Writing it down makes it more real. It gets you out of your mind and into the mode of making it happen...

What tricks do you use to change old habits? 

Do you plan your workouts?

What helps you get to the gym?

My New FitBit Flex & 5 Ways to Walk More Throughout the Day

Making the Most of Your FitBit.png

Hey guys! Today I'm going to talk about the FitBit Flex. I just got one last week and already, I'm loving it! This little gadget is easy, fun to use and it's really doing the trick to make me move more!

When I setup the Fitbit, it automatically set my daily target to 10,000 steps, which is recommended by the American Heart Association. Can you believe I thought getting 10,000 steps a day would be easy? I've since learned it's not! And if I'm going to do it, I've got to vehemently resist society's sedentary lifestyle--driving to work and sitting at a desk all day-- and get moving!

FitBitFlex-1
FitBitFlex-1

The FitBit is a great motivator, though! Just the other night I was waiting for Aaron to finish looking around REI (his favorite store, my least favorite) and when I double tapped my FitBit and saw that I was still several bars from reaching my daily goal, I decided I'd walk around the store to wait, not sit! I started walking laps around the store aisles and even though I might have looked a little crazy, I got an instant burst of energy and it wasn't long before I achieved another bar closer to my goal (which is an awesome feeling, btw)!

The flashing LED lights are probably my favorite feature (it makes checking my progress so easy!), but I'm also incredibly impressed with the battery life on this little guy-- it's amazing! I only charged it 60% the day I got it and it's been going strong for four days! (That's more than I can say for my cell phone!) Here are a few other things I love:

// It's waterproof: I can wear it in the shower or if I go swimming! I love that I don't have to think about it at all! I can hardly feel it on my wrist and I can wear it anywhere!

// There's two bands: Right now I'm wearing the smaller of the two bands around my wrist but it came with another band that is slightly bigger that can be worn around the ankle. I'm just so glad I don't have to wrap anything around my body and be uncomfortable. I can totally handle an anklet or wristlet!

// It syncs with my smartphone: It syncs with my computer and my smartphone! I can open the app anytime and see my friend's activity and my own stats: how many calories I've burned, steps I've taken, even sleep patterns! The app even has a really clean interface, too, which I love, and did I mention it has the ability to with MyFitnessPal too?

// There's a silent alarm: The wristband vibrates to alert me of alarms I've set, whether it's to wake up in the morning or remind me to make a call! I love having an alarm that's not connected to my phone, but still close by at all times!

// It's like a game: Have you heard the phrase Gameify? It's a word used to describe a unique way to get people intrigued. The idea is that if you gameify something, i.e., make it fun and like a game, people are more likely to use it. Well, there's definitely a gaming element to the FitBit (an easy one - I just double tap my wrist - that's it!) and I LOVE IT!

Alright, so, as much as I love this device and think that it makes moving a lot more fun, it still takes dedication do get going! Here are some things I'm doing to walk more throughout the day and make the most of my FitBit!

FitBit
FitBit

When you have to go to the bathroom, walk to the furthest one.

I used to think working in a big building was annoying because the bathroom isn't right outside my office. But, since getting the FitBit, I'm now walking to an even further bathroom! I take the elevator down to the first floor, walk the length of the building to the bathroom and then back! It really helps add a few steps throughout the day!

Park further away.

I used to love getting the closest spot to wherever I'm going, but now I realize the value in a few extra steps. Again, I work in a big building with a big parking lot and it's not such a bad thing to have to walk further!

Treat your pup and go for a longer walk.

Now that it's nicer outside, I don't mind taking a long walk with my pup, which is great for him and me! I can get so many more steps just taking a longer walk in the morning or evening with him, when I'm already walking him anyway!

Setup walking dates.

My hubby doesn't love this idea but going for a walk (sans cell phones) is a great way to connect and catch-up! Especially during the spring, it's nice to get out in nature and enjoy each other's company.

When you're idle, walk (or squat!), don't sit.

I often find myself waiting, whether it's to go into a meeting, for my coffee to brew, or for my husband to finish shopping at REI... I've decided to pace, walk in circles, or squat! (Squatting through the day is good for you!) You'd be surprised how many extra steps you can get in when you'd otherwise just be standing around. So, now, even if I'm in a store, I'll walk around in circles or up and down the aisles. I might look crazy but I'm burning calories. :)

Do you have a FitBit or FitBit Flex?

What are your favorite features?

How do you get in extra movement throughout the day?

Please note that FitforaBrideBlog.com participates in select affiliate advertising programs. This means that if you click and/or make a purchase through certain links on the site or any related social media platforms, FitforaBrideBlog.com may make a commission from that click and/or purchase. All opinions are my own, and all brands featured represent what I personally like and support.  

Five At-Home Gym Must-Haves

Do you ever have those days you don't feel like going to the gym? Maybe it's dreary outside or you don't have a lot of time... That's when these at-home gym must-haves come in handy! You guys know I'm a huge fan of the Jillian Michael's 30 Day Shred. The workouts are only 20 minutes! Just 20 minutes! Add a few planks and jump rope to that and volia, you've got a workout as good as any trip to the gym! 

At-home-gym
At-home-gym

Seriously! I never knew how effective a DVD, dumbbells, and 20 minutes could be! I've always really believed in the buddy system and in personal training, so it's a stretch for me to think I can do this on my own, but I must say: I've had a change of heart. With these five must-haves, you (and me!) can have kick-ass workouts in the convenience of our home!

1. DVDs: When moving, I noticed I have the Skinny Bitch bootcamp DVD, but guess this: it's never been opened! (Who else is guilty of this?) Here's the thing: I felt energized at the sight of it! "Oh! A new routine!" I'll admit I got a little tired of doing the Jillian workout everyday. Keep several workout DVDs on hand. They're fairly inexpensive ($10 at Target for these Jillian DVDs), and they last forever!

2. Yoga Mat: Who doesn't need a pretty pink yoga mat? I had a black one for the longest time, but discovered that a bright-colored yoga mat energized me! It got me excited about working out to pull out a pop of pink!

3. Kettle bell ($34 at City Sports): I love working out with a kettle bell because it packs a lot of punch! The kettle bell is a dynamic tool that can take your workouts from 0-10 in no time! Adding a little weight to your routine will get your heart rate up, and it will make you stronger, too! Kettle bells are the sh*t!

4. Jump rope ($8 at Wal-Mart): I LOVE jumping rope! My dad used to make me do it in High School because he said it would make me faster, which I totally didn't believe at the time, but now I do! My personal trainer now loves the jumprope too. He says he jumps rope first thing in the morning to get his heart rate up (and wake up, I guess? I get coffee, but admire his tenacity)! Any little jumping movement is good because it burns calories! Waiting for noodles to boil? Jump rope! Bored during commercials? Jump rope.

5. Free weights ($30 on Amazon.com): I'm one of those people who likes their space very tiddy- if it's laying on the floor, it's not where it should be (i.e. everything has a place)! That's why I love this free weights tower. It's a cute place to always put your weights, rather than stashing them away (where you never see them again!) or trip over them on the living room floor!

What are you at-home must-haves?

What are your favorite at-home workouts?