Category Archives: NYC

Stepping Up the Sunday Game

I love my job, so I don’t typically experience much Sunday night dread (woo!), but I do like to have nice, relaxing Sundays. Don’t get me wrong, I love a boozy brunch, but I prefer it on Saturday, so I have more time to recover because I’m old.

The Sunday before last, I had a really fun, relaxing day going to the Park Ave. Christmas Tree Lighting (new annual tradition, for sure) and writing out Christmas cards with a friend.

This week though, I picked it up a notch.

I started the day heading out to Brooklyn to meet my coworkers to go ice-skating. You know you really like people when you spend 50+ hours a week with them…and choose to spend more time with them outside of work. In their borough on a Sunday morning

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We went to LeFrak Center in Prospect Park, and got there right when it opened at 10. Jordan and Alex both used to skate competitively (NBD) and were doing all kinds of awesome tricks on the ice. Me? I was just trying to keep my balance. But by the end, I wanted to play, too, and asked them to teach me some tricks. I am proud to say I didn’t fall after this one. What you cannot see is that I am gripping Alex’s arms within an inch of their lives. You don’t have any marks on your arm now, do you, Alex? We skated and listened to Christmas music and drank hot chocolate. And it was PERFECT.

I hopped back on the subway and got off at Union Square and slowly made my way home, stopping in the stalls in the holiday fair there before having a near panic attack with how crowded it was, and then meandering up Fifth through Flatiron, crossing some people off my shopping list. Finally.

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NEXT! My parents came into town to see the Nutcracker. We’ve been doing this every year since I moved into the city except last year, since my dad was about to have knee surgery and in a lot of pain. I have seen this show so many times now and it never ceases to amaze me. I got us, um, not the best tickets, and we had to crane our necks to see over the balcony. We had a great view of the orchestra, though, which made me appreciate what an amazing job they do. Every single thing about that show is on point, from the music to the dancing to the costumes to the sets.

 Stepping Up the Sunday Game

I am so lucky to have my parents close by and in good health, and I will treasure special moments like this forever and plan to continue on this tradition with kids of my own one day. Tutus required.

What’s a perfect Sunday for you?

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Giving ClassPass a Try

I’m sort of into fitness. I really like to try…everything I can. Which is why I gave CrossFit a try but decided it wasn’t for me right now.

I love boutique classes and trying as many of them as I can. I’m really lucky that this blog and my job give me the opportunity to try a lot of them for free, but there are approximately one gazillion fitness studios in NYC, and I could go broke trying them all, even with those hookups.

And since 2014 is clearly the year I can’t stick to one thing…I decided to try ClassPass. If you’re not familiar with it, it’s $99/month for as many classes as you can take. I used to be a skeptic of this too (I don’t remember why, to be honest), but the other day I decided I really needed to try it. My coworker Amanda’s doing it, and I was getting really intrigued by hearing about all the cool classes she was trying.

So I forked over my cash last week to give it a try. And so far I’m liking it! When you consider that boutique classes are usually $30+, if you go to more than 3 classes, you’ve already more than broken even. You can’t go to any studio more than 3 times in a month (which is fair to the owners of the studios) and so far it seems like you need to plan ahead a little further than you might ordinarily to get into some classes, but I’m using it as a way to find new classes. The last time I looked into, I was trying to use it as a way to go to my faves on the cheap, and that’s not really what it’s meant for.

This week, I tried…

BFX Studio

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I like to workout and be active, but I am fundamentally lazy and anticipate 94% of these classes will be in the morning, when I’m not generally down to hop on the subway to work out, so 99% of the classes I try (at least during the week) will likely be in Chelsea/Flatiron. Which is fine since there’s so many studios here. #nevermoving

The first class I tried out was Fusion Ride at BFX Studio. I had heard a lot about it, but didn’t know a ton other than that it was pretty close to me.

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I walked in and it looked pretty gorgeous. According to this Well + Good article, the studio is trying to bridge the gap between studios that offer one kind of class and big-box gyms. (Although it’s owned by Town Sports, which owns NYSC.) They teach everything from Spin to barre to strength classes.

The Fusion class I took was half Spin, half strength. The bikes had those little monitors on them, which I’m never crazy about. I just suck on the bike, so it’s frustrating not hitting the speeds I’m supposed to. The class was less than half full (it was also a cold, rainy day in December), so the energy in that part of the class felt lacking for sure.

After 30 minutes, we moved on to strength in a little room across the hall. We were to pick up a kettlebell and two heavy weights. I was pleased that I picked up heavier weights than most of the women in the class. The class involved three different sets of exercises, including stuff like rows, burpees and core work at the end. Overall, I loved that the class was both a full-body workout and combined cardio and strength, and not in that bullshit way that spin classes have you lift 3 pound weights for 3 minutes and call it strength.

Throwback Fitness

Another one I’ve been wanting to try since it opened and hadn’t gotten around to it!  They called this “team fitness” and say they are “gamifying fitness,” and that’s pretty damn close.

I walked in to the studio and had basically no idea what to expect but thought it’d probably be fun. I knew there was a team element, and I hoped I wouldn’t be the weirdo newbie nobody would want to team up with. I was wrong, whew.

We started off with a warm-up that had us passing a medicine ball and doing jumping jacks and burpees in between.

From there, we moved to a partner workout where we did 12 kettlebell pulls, 10 kettlebell situps and mountain climbers for 2 rounds; once you finished, you switched the rowing machine and vice versa. The partner aspect definitely felt a lot like CrossFit. From there, we did another team thing with teams of 3 where you had to do jump squats, high/low planks and some other move that escapes me now. Once you finished, you could take a shot at a basketball hoop for 1, 2 or 3 points. “Welp, I’m going to be doing a lot of burpees,” I said as we started. But instead, I just stood at the one-point line and went for the easy sure shots.

It was a SUPER fun workout, and everyone was really friendly. So, like Uplift, but with dudes

We also just launched an AWESOME program at work with Bob Harper that I can’t wait to try. It’s been a really exciting project for us to talk about around the office, and it’s amazing that it’s finally live.

What’s your favorite workout? What do you turn to when you get bored with your usual workouts? NYC/ClassPass people – what are your favorite studios/classes?

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