10 Tips to Stay On Top Of Your Fitness Goals

New Year’s Eve has long since come and gone, but those little things called resolutions are technically still hanging around. If you were inspired to up your fitness level this winter, the original motivation of your goal might be starting to waver. It’s cold outside. It’s hard to get in shape. It’s not easy to change old habits. 

Here are my top 10 tips for staying active, even when everything inside you screams “give it up already!”

1. Put each workout on your calendar
Make yourself a plan and stick to it. It’ll be hard in the beginning, but by making trips to the gym part of your day, like a work meeting or class, it becomes more routine. And inevitably, less painful. You should see my Google Calendar- I’ve got it down to the leg day.

2. Carry healthy power snacks with you
It’s easy to make an excuse for skipping the gym. My number one: I didn’t have the power to workout because I was too hungry. By carrying foods that fuel a workout, like almonds and protein bars, you’ll always have the pick-me-up you need.

3. Don’t be afraid to try new workouts
Treadmills get stale quick, as do 7 spin classes or 7 lifts or 7 Zumbas a week. Don’t be afraid to mix it up. It’ll challenge your body more and give you the ability to find what really gets you excited to be active. You never know what you might love until you lace up your sneakers and go.

4. Have an idea of what your workout is… before you get to the gym
You’ll waste less time and be able to accomplish more in a shorter period of time. If you’re unsure of your workout, you might default to less effective, more generic moves, rather than things that could really challenge and change you. Or even worse, resort to walking around trying to figure out what to do. Which leads me to my next suggestion…

5. Keep a log of workouts on your phone
Instagram, Pinterest, and Youtube are amazing resources to help plan workouts. There are more things out there than pushups and situps and ellipticals. Explore different circuits that hit muscles you didn’t think of before. Honestly, it can be even easier than Insta- a simple Google search can yield millions of options. My personal favorites are this ab killer and this youtube video that’s going to turn me into Gigi Hadid.

6. Ease your way into fitness & take your recovery days
No one said you have to be John Cena on day one. Give your body time to build up strength and work towards higher weights, rather than grabbing them from the start. Along with that, make sure to give your body time to heal post workout. This means stretching and rolling your muscles but also taking a day or two off a week to relax and heal.

7. Not every workout has to be the best
Sometimes half the battle is getting to the gym. Give yourself a break if you’re lifting lighter or sprinting slower some days. Fitness is a cumulative process. Somedays will be stronger than others. And when you are having an off day, take it a little easier. If you push too hard now, you’ll keep suffering later.

8. Find a workout buddy
What really changed my workout game was finding a partner to lift with (Hi, Sam). While we don’t hype and push each other like some fitness friends, we work towards our goals together and make our time at the gym enjoyable. Don’t get me wrong, we work hard as hell between the hours of 7 to 9am, but if Sam’s in the gym, you know I have to be there, too. Sometimes, it’s all about accountability, baby.

9. Ask when you don’t know
Part one: instead of skipping weird moves or leaving hard classes, ask for modifications to exercises to match them to your fitness level. And part two: I’ve found the fitness community to be excited to show someone the ropes, don’t be afraid to ask how a machine works if you don’t know. There’s no reason you have to figure it out all on your own.

10. Remember: You’ll never regret it once it’s over
The most concrete, absolute, real thing about exercising is that you will NEVER regret a workout once it’s over. When that elbow sweat drops after squats or you hit that flat road at the end of a spin class, being proud is inevitable. It’s why I get to the gym. It’s why the guy next to you gets to the gym. It’s why you get to the gym. No pain, no gain. And definitely no regrets.

So keep running, box jumping, and mountain climbing your way through 2018, friends. Your fitness progress awaits. 


Stuck in my head: Go F*ck Yourself // Two Feet
Snap it: A gym near you

Soul Virgin No More.

Post-finals I took a much-needed break and escaped to the concrete jungle. It was two days stuffed full of $6 Fruit Loops from Kellog’s Cereal Bar, brunch at Jack’s Wife Freida, and all the coffee breaks in between. I came home with a fabulous furry pink jacket and a sense of “okay, so when am I moving to the city?” 

On Monday morning something big happened. I took my first ever Soul Cycle class. Pause for gasps. I know, you would think I would be all over the trend, but in fact, I was a Soul Virgin. Don’t worry- we fixed that.

To be honest, the class was a little overwhelming. The music was loud (loved it), the other riders were model-esq (loved it less), and the ride was fast and furious (back to love). We’re talking revolutions per minute that could get you to LA in seconds. It was honestly one of the toughest workouts I’ve done in a while. Heart rate through the roof, tongue out panting, sweat pooling on the handlebars. 

All in all, I’m not sure the Soul movement is right for me, but I’m all for something that gets people moving. Something that gets people falling in love with exercise. Something that pushes people to hit their max every day. So, while you might not catch me doing tap backs in the candlelit studio, I still love the fitness craze Soul has initiated. It’s truly unique in taking wellness from single player to a team sport.

I can tell that each class is motivation. While it doesn’t get easier, you definitely get stronger. Some part of everyone wants to be the sports-bra wearing regular that owns bike number 6. It’s just a matter of getting up and getting in the saddle.

They say you need three classes to fall into the rhythm, so I’m down to hop on the bike and hit that resistance again soon. Let me know who’s down for a ride. 


Stuck in my head: Real Love Baby // Father John Misty
Snap it: SOHO, NYC

Previous post was deleted for certain reasons. Apologies from the blogger still in bed. 

Calling All the Cyclists.

I feel like on some level I knew I was born to scream at riders from a bike since my first spin class back in freshman year of high school. Something about the music, the ride, and the energy in the room captured me from day one and I was addicted. The sound of the pedals is music to my ears. I wish I had it on a track to listen to all day. Spinning to the sound of spinning, watch out it’s the new Soul Cycle.

Not going to lie, it was a little intimidating going into my first class. I had practiced the playlist & cues at least a million times, but saying it on a mic was a little more intense than whispering it in the corner of a crowded gym. But if I’m not lying then I also have to admit I wasn’t that nervous, it was just my workout with a little twist.

I really wanted to become a spin teacher for a couple reasons. The music, the ride, and the motivation.

For the music-I truly believe that if your playlist is something that gets people singing and dancing and moving all on its own, your workout will fly by even if you just do a seated climb the entire time. Cue Justin Beiber, Beyonce, and all kinds of Iggy.

For the ride- I love to switch it up in each song. No two songs are exactly the same. Shorter segments of each movement makes for a shorter feeling ride and a stronger rider.

For the motivation- I really want to help people find their love for exercise the way past spin teachers have helped me find mine. My first class teaching was full of first timers, and while it was a super hard playlist, I was so proud to introduce all those ladies (and man) to something that really helped me learn to value my health. If I even get one girl to come back & give it another go I’ll be one step closer to my goal. And yes, my goal is to add some more spin junkies to a world seemingly overflowing with runners. 

Hey Mom, I think I’ve found my calling. Forget college, I’m offically pushing pedals and playing pop music for a living. 


Stuck in my head: Reflections // Misterwives
Snap it: University of Maryland

Catch me Mondays at 6:30pm.

Shoutout to my favorite spin buddy for coming out for my Satuday class this week. Peace, love, mothers&daughters that spin together. Also sorry to MC who was forced into the ride. Hope the sweat was worth it. 

A Month of No Sweat.

The Netflix filled nights of break have been traded for textbooks and trainings & I’m totally okay with it. Aimlessness has never really been my thing. I’m more of a to-do list kind of girl. Not that no reason Target runs weren’t great, I just find academics a little more fulfilling.

All change is hard, but changing routine is always the hardest. Over break I momentarily detached myself from my one true love: exercise. If you know me at all, you know this was heartwrenching and emotional to live through (insert tears here). Spin bikes were replaced by walks to the fridge and I basically forgot what a dumbell was. But through my *fitness pause* I learned a lot about body image and how meaningful exercise is to me. 

I’m such a body positive preacher. Learn it, see it in the mirror, love it. And I originally thought that taking a break from my intense exercise schedule would lead all that positivity to falter. It’s natural to associate inactivity with gaining weight, and gaining weight with lower self confidence. Though I was suffering through my down time, I really enjoyed spending even more time with the people I loved, doing whatever we were doing, whether it was devouring a pizza or shopping. Focusing my energy more on making the most of the moments I had with my friends and family made the days pass like minutes and dulled my eagerness to get back to the gym. The pressure of idleness faded and for the first time in a long time skipping the gym wasn’t more tragic than the Titanic. 

But don’t you dare for a second think that I stopped missing the sweat that starts in your elbows as you squat or the beat that pushes you through that sprint. Everyday I wished I could get up and lift it out, and finally ONE MONTH LATER I could.

Sitting on the spin bike for the first time in a while was a little nerve wracking but more exciting. For me, the thrill of a hard workout is almost romantic. With my spin classes (that I’m teaching!!!) starting next week, it’s crunch time to whip my body back into shape. I’ve never backed down from a challenge, and this definitely won’t be the first time. Double workouts days, here I come.

So here’s my two cents, if you’ve ever wanted to workout, just get out there and do it. Find the type of fitness that makes you passionate because once you love it, there’s no turning back. Turn Instagram goals into personal goals and get on that stairclimber today. You can totally have a Kardashian butt if you climb hard enough.

Here’s to being happy doing nothing, happy doing something, and happy inbetween. Today’s workout is definitely going in my 100 Happy Days book. Feels good to be back where I belong. 


Stuck in my head: Peanut Butter Jelly // Galantis
Snap it: Madewell, NYC

 

Women in the Work(out) Force…

Let’s start with ancient history, shall we? Since the dawn of time women have competed. First it was for food, then it was for men, now it’s for everything from a husband on reality TV to the last pair of booties at the Nordstroms Annual Sale. And I’m not going to lie, I love a little competition as much as the next person, but there’s something else that’s really motivating about working out with strong women- they’re strong.

I am like a little baby gym rat. Love spin. Love bootcamp. Love body pump. Love it all. And up until I went to school, I was always surrounded by fit women more than twice my age while I exercised. And I loved it. I found it so motivational to be surrounded by all these adults that had real, busy lives and could still spin like there’s no tomorrow. There’ve been times where I’ve looked over and seen women lifting three times my weight, so what do I do? Add it on. If she can do it, so can I.

Whenever I see a woman in amazing shape, maybe she’s lifting hundreds or has amazing pushup form, I honestly just want to stop her and be like “GOALS.” It’s that feeling of hope, that could be me someday it could be me under that bar, that really pushes me forward. So thank you, strong ass women. I owe my exercise ability to you. 

Beyond that, there’s a motivation network you can build just through being surrounded by women as ready to challenge themselves as you. At school, during a particularly hard track the entire room bursts into counting down until it’s over. Somehow, screaming as you squat creates a community. We highfive as we wipe our sweat. The fatigue brings us closer. I love that feeling of girl power. 

Now, I can admit some of my workouts are a little quirky and horrible (think 1.5 hours on stairclimber), but I love love love going to the gym with friends & being part of a group of girls that really values exercise. I mean last weekend we literally slept for like 4 hours and still hit the gym the next day. Ladies keeping each other strong. Live for that kind of friendship. 

In the spirit of working out, I want to share some exciting news! I am getting certified to become a spin instuctor. I’m only 1 week, a 2 hour ride, a 6 hour training session, a textbook, and an online exam away from screaming at riders to get their RPMs above 80. But on the serious side, I’m excited to be a motivational force in someone’s work out. I think that a good teacher can spark a good habit, and I really hope I get the opportunity to make people fall in love with spinning the way my teachers have.

To wrap this up because spin class and turkey are calling, I want to say Happy Thanksgiving, Women At The Gym. Keep lifting. Keep stairclimbing. I’m sure I’ll need a little extra of your inspiration after my apple pie food baby sets in.


Stuck in my Head: All Time Low // Jon Bellion
Snap it: College Park Color Run (Warning: the color does not come out. Your ears will be blue forever)

No hate to guys at the gym. I just know I’ll never really be able to get your kind of muscle definition. But mad respect, you all do some crazy shit sometimes. I mean one handed pushups with kettlebells on your back, sick, but I’m not really trynna do that ever. I think I would break in half. 

Also shoutout to my favorite workout buddy, Marnie D. Metzman. Too bad Mike’s not here to whip our turkey filled bodies into shape.