Tag Archives: spin class

Get Your Spin On

6 Feb

Last night I went to spin class for the first time in a long, long time. Since my first spin class in November, I have only been in a handful of times. The lingering pain in my backside might have something to do with it. Fun surprise? Allison was there!


When the instructor arrived, he announced that our class that evening would be dedicated to the winner of the Super Bowl, Beyonce. You guys know how I feel about her, so I was pretty jazzed to get my pedals moving to some Queen B. In actuality, there were only a couple of Beyonce songs thrown in the mix and I would have loved a class that was all B/Destiny’s Child (was the only one who loved seeing all three of them together at the Super Bowl?). My gym has a suggestion box in the entry area and I might suggest that our spinning class starting having tribute nights.

After a seriously sweaty spin sesh (alliteration heaven!!!), I couldn’t wait to get home and guzzle more water along with dinner. I have been all about the roasted veggies lately, so I cooked up some brussels sprouts with a little balsamic vinegar and had that alongside a bowl of lentil soup. It’s safe to say that I will be eating this soup every meal of the day until I run out.

IMG_1984[1]There are so many different kinds of vegetables to roast (and ways to flavor them), I don’t see how anybody could get bored.

IMG_1986[1]After a quick dinner, I spent the rest of the evening over my laptop, trying to figure out my taxes, and realized why people have accountants.

math-taxes-accountants-hr-block-ecards-someecardsIt looks like my refund might be enough to cover one of my major wish list items: a fancy heart rate monitor.

I had a brief Twitter conversation with some fellow HLBs (healthy living bloggers) yesterday, which renewed my interest in researching heart rate monitors.

twitterI feel as if the heart rate monitors on the cardio devices I use at the gym are way off base and I’d like to get a better idea of what my target heart rate range is and which exercise are giving me the most bang for my buck. I know a lot of people are big on the Polar brand, but I am a horribly indecisive shopper and need to do extensive amounts of research before I buy just about anything.

Food For Thought: Do you own a heart rate monitor or any other cool fitness gadgets that you love? Spill the beans!

The Board Room

18 Dec

Hi all. I’m still trying to muster up the motivation to write about my day-to-day life when the lives of so many others have been profoundly altered this past weekend. One of the things that is helping me is doing some readings by Pema Chodron, a Buddhist teacher. One of things she says relates to grief, which I really identified with:

“Life is glorious, but life is also wretched. It is both. Appreciating the gloriousness inspires us, encourages us, cheers us up, gives us a bigger perspective, energizes us. We feel connected. But if that’s all that’s happening, we get arrogant and start to look down on others, and there is a sense of making ourselves a big deal and being really serious about it, wanting it to be like that forever. The gloriousness becomes tinged by craving and addiction. On the other hand, wretchedness–life’s painful aspect–softens us up considerably. Knowing pain is a very important ingredient of being there for another person. When you are feeling a lot of grief, you can look right into somebody’s eyes because you feel you haven’t got anything to lose–you’re just there. The wretchedness humbles us and softens us, but if we were only wretched, we would all just go down the tubes. We’d be so depressed, discouraged, and hopeless that we wouldn’t have enough energy to eat an apple. Gloriousness and wretchedness need each other. One inspires us, the other softens us. They go together.”

So it’s still a little rough going around here, but I’m working on it.

In the spirit of trying to get back to normalcy, I want to tell you about a fun new discovery in the city. The girlfriend of Stefano’s cousin was celebrating her birthday yesterday and Stef met up with me after work so we could walk over there together.

We arrived at an unassuming bar called the Board Room and walked inside, imagining it to be a typical bar. Wrong!

This place is not your average bar. Upon entering, you notice a large cabinet right inside the doorway and tables line the main floor and upper level. Inside the locked cabinet? Scores upon scores of board games! Every kind of board game you can imagine, from Parcheesi to Risk.

board-room-barThe decorations inside were all board game-themed, complete with a chandelier made out of dice and chess pieces. Even the bar counter was themed, with Monopoly-esque characters decorating the top.

Front-Bar-PatOur group grabbed first grabbed ‘Taboo’, but finished up the night with a new-to-me game called ‘Telestrations’, which is a kind of a cross between ‘Telephone’ and ‘Pictionary’. It was pretty hilarious and some of the final guesses were nowhere near the original word (one word started as ‘Picasso’ and ended as ‘wheelchair’).

Since I knew I was going to a happy hour right after work, I got my workout in during lunchtime in the form of a spin class at my gym. This was my first time with this particular instructor and it’s pretty amazing how different the styles of coaching are with each person. So far, I have experience three different spin instructors and they each have their own strengths: one is very encouraging and very well suited to beginners. She reminds me of a yoga instructor in that she’s very focused on each person honoring their body and what they’re individually capable of. Another instructor is totally different, she has much more of a push yourself, ‘go go go’ style. Each is nice, depending on what I’m looking for that particular day. The third instructor I’ve only had once, but had the best playlist, by far.

It feels like one of those days where I would like to get in and own out of the gym, so today I’m thinking about doing my own circuit workout, along with some cardio. I’ve got lots of loose ends I want to tie up before Stef and I leave for Seattle on Saturday!

Hope you all are having an enjoyable day, sending you all big hugs from over here in my little corner of the world.

Food for Thought: What is your favorite board game? Do you prefer board games or cards?

My favorite board game is Trivial Pursuit, because it finally rewards me for being a total nerd and knowing useless facts about absolutely random topics. I’m also a big fan of Settlers of Catan – it reminds me of a board game version of the Oregon Trail!



Gizmos and Gadgets

15 Nov

So, let’s talk about my arms and how I am struggling with moving them this morning. Ouuuuch.

Between the pull-ups on Tuesday and Body Pump yesterday, my upper back and arms are feeling the weight (ha!). I’m glad for this because I had been a little too comfortable in my routine and the soreness is a sign that my body is reacting to the change-up.

In other news, you don’t get to see pictures of my food today because I forgot my camera cord. Whomp whomp.

My roommate totally made fun of me for taking pictures of my dinner the other night. Sigh.

Today, I am looking forward to going to the gym and trying spin class for the first time! My knees are not so good with bicycles and I’m going to be a total n00b, but I need to give it a go at least one time. Who knows? Maybe I’ll get addicted to it and it will cycled into my exercise rotation.

Then again, it’s an image like this that makes me worried. Somebody please tell me that it’s not as bad as I’ve made it out to be in my head!

Gizmos and Gadgets

If you follow me on Twitter, you might have seen the New York Times article I tweeted last night, which reviewed the new line of fitness tracking bracelets from  Nike and Jawbone.


I’ve never had any kind of fitness gadget, but I know some people use pedometers, heart rate monitors, FitBits, and other gizmos to keep track of their daily activities. Reading the review of the new bracelets, I am definitely intrigued by both but also a little bit skeptical, given the drawbacks of each.


I am really curious about the sleep monitoring feature touted by the Up band, made by Jawbone. One of the perks that comes with that are these “Insights” that the band comes up with after monitoring your activity, eating, and sleeping levels. As the Times said,

“But if you do, the new Up band is supposed to do something useful with the information. It comes up with what Jawbone calls Insights — observations that it determines by correlating your sleep, activity, food and location information. ‘You tend to eat more when you’re on the West Coast,’ it might say, or, ‘You don’t sleep as well when you eat after 9 p.m.,’ or, “‘You fall asleep faster on the days when you’ve worked out.'”

The Nike Fuel band has the added perk of being able to sync your data to your iPhone wirelessly, while the Up band demands a somewhat complicated process.

They’re both pretty pricey, with the the Nike Fuel at $150 and the Jawbone Up at $130, but Christmas is also right around the corner 😉

Food For Thought: Have you ever used a fitness gadget to monitor your activity levels? If you have one that you really like, what do you recommend?

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