Finding Endorphins in an Unlikely Place: New Balance Girls Night Out

Hello, my name is Theodora.


I like running.

I like group fitness.

I like cocktails.

I like summer and the pool and the beach.

I like dancing…when it is combined with the summer and the beach and cocktails late at night.

Dance as fitness?!


If I’m being perfectly honest, it’s because I know I have less than zero rhythm, and I’m embarrassed and feel very inhibited — which is the opposite of what you’re supposed to be, but I’m an uptight bitch.

But I somehow have gone to TWO dance classes this week — one, I didn’t realize what I was getting myself into at an event and ended up Zumba-ing…still not my jam.

Tonight, though! My lovely New Balance people invited me to their Girls Night Out event. The purpose of these nights is to give women a free, fun way to bond over fitness instead of cocktails. (Or, hey, cocktails after…) The instructor tonight was Krystal, one of our Daily Burn trainers. It’s super important to me to support/stalk our DB fam, so I couldn’t say no!

And then I realized it was a dance workout…well, I wasn’t going to back out. So I brought my coworker Mallory with me, and we ran into Ashley and Heather there.

Girls Night Out

We met at the NB store on the UES and somehow fell behind everyone else chatting. By the time we walked in, the class had started and the only spots left were in the front. Let me remind you again — I do not like to dance and am not good at it.

But I had no choice but to get the hell over myself and dance my butt off in this cute outfit NB sent us. ( Top / jacket / bra / leggings / shoes) A quick note on the outfit: I loved the jacket, leggings and shoes (the Zante shoes are part of my regular rotation. I was not a Fresh Foam believer when it launched, but they’ve really improved on it, and it’s a great balance of responsive yet supportive now.) The bra…it was OK for dance (except when she had us do mountain climbers, but most bras can’t handle mountain climbers for me, to be fair), but it wouldn’t work for anything higher impact for me. The shirt was super cute…on others, but long and tight does my body no favors. 

Back to the dancing! I was happy to have Heather next to me, Ashley behind me, Mallory a few spots over, and know the lady behind the microphone. The first song or two were, um, interesting…and then I decided to just let go. If I was going to be the awkward girl in the front, I was going to be the awkward bad dancer, not the awkward, stiff girl in the front. So I shut up and danced. And it was actually pretty awesome, and I walked out with an entirely different type of endorphin high.

Two completely unrelated questions:

1. Team dance or no?

2. I’m starting to have some tightness in my left shoulder/neck which I know is entirely related to carrying a heavy tote every day. I’m thinking of joining Team Backpack. I wear workout clothes often to work (yes, dream job), so I want something more athleisure than sporty, if that makes sense — something that can dress up my workout clothes a bit and fit a laptop, workout clothes and bottle of wine. Any suggestions? No Herschel! (Just not for me.)

14 comments on “Finding Endorphins in an Unlikely Place: New Balance Girls Night Out

  1. wendy

    love dance/fitness classes, but then again, I was on dance team in high school and college.
    I dislike backpacks for me, but longchamp makes a cute one

  2. Ali

    I’ve been Team Backpack for years, and highly recommend getting on board. I wanted a backpack that was nice-looking enough for events, but casual enough to use as a gym bag, too. (And I didn’t want to spend a fortune. $300 for a backpack? No.) So I found this Vera Bradley backpack and got it in black, and I’m a big fan. Now before you think to yourself, “Vera Bradley, really?” allow me to introduce you to this: Pockets! A separate compartment for your laptop! Comfortable! Affordable! Highly, highly recommend.

  3. Laura F

    I am not a dancer, unless the song comes with specific instructions. I will rock out to the Cupid Shuffle or the Cha Cha Slide any day of the week. And one time I let someone teach me how to Wobble. Aside from that – no thank you.

    This line really resonated with me – “If I was going to be the awkward girl in the front, I was going to be the awkward bad dancer, not the awkward, stiff girl in the front.” I am going to try and remember this next time in a social setting that requires me to make a choice between being awkwardly boring or just awkward.

  4. meredith (The Cookie ChRUNicles)

    i was totally going to suggest something from MZ Wallace and I see someone else said the same! I didn’t get the backpack but I got a great bag recently that also comes with a cross body strap. I love it and it’s actually light in comparison to my other bags.

  5. Kayla

    1. Definitely team dance… but I feel like I’m cheating because I took dance classes from the time I was 4 thru college… and was required to take dance classes as a theater major in college. Uh and worked as the dance specialist at a day camp while I was in college. BUT I’m definitely no ballerina and feel like I’m out of practice now, even in a zumba class.

    2. And as far as backpacks go, I use this one from Herschel. It’s not as cute as the tote I used to use, but much much much nicer on the shoulders and has a great pouch for laptops.

  6. Katie

    I tweeted at you about Henri Bendle’s backpack, but its probably not big enough for a full NYC day (change of clothes, etc.) Anthropologie has plenty of cute backpacks, but I hate spending that kind of money on brands I don’t recognize. I’m team dance, but I’m anti mountain climbers and burpies. I refuse to do them. refuse.

  7. Marisa

    I never considered myself a dancer until I found OULA. It’s about so much more than dance and it’s the first time I’ve truly danced like nobody was watching. And it’s an excellent workout. I’ve cried while dancing, and laughed and just had to stop because I’ve lost myself in footwork. It’s the most supportive, wonderful environment ever.

    You can check out the website – or there are classes on powhow.

  8. Lori

    I wanted to offer a suggestion for a bra. I have ALWAYS had massive boobs I could never contain. I had a breast reduction a few months back, which was life changing, but I still feel the need to tie my smaller but still large boobs down when doing anything fitness. That’s where this bra comes in:

    What I love most about this bra is that you can connect it in the back to cross the straps (the second picture in the link, but I connect mine way higher up where it gives better support). Crossing the straps isn’t even wholly necessary sometimes, which i think speaks volumes. I do a ton of HIIT training and running in it. I always thought I’d be a double bra wear-er in the gym for the rest of my life, but not with this! Not only does it do the best job of containing things ever, it’s comfortable, and I love the shape it gives me when I wear it under normal clothes. It’s also HELLA affordable!


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