Meet me at the barre

BarreHey Lovers,

As you know from some of my “recent” posts, I’ve really been into fitness lately which is never a phrase I pictured myself saying even 2 years ago. You can check out some of my older fitness related posts here and here.
I’ve tried a ton of classes. I’ve tried, bikram yoga, vinyasa yoga, hot vinyasa, pilates, Hot HIIT pilates, barre, sculpting, cardio, circuit, etc. By far barre is my favorite workout. It’s my favorite for a few reasons. First, you can’t look at a person’s size and tell whether or not they’ll be good. I’ve seen thick girls bust splits and thin girls give up. It’s also very effective for women’s bodies. Barre makes the body leaner and more toned without creating bulk. I saw the quickest results after joining a barre studio. Keep reading for a few thoughts on the barre studios I’ve visited. 

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ClassPass Month 1 Review

img_5904Hey Lovers,

I know I’ve been totally inconsistent for the last several (7) months. As I joked on Facebook, I’m basically the Frank Ocean of blogging. Please forgive me. Now that work is calm-ish, I can get back to a semi-regular writing schedule.

Switching jobs caused me to lose my cheap membership at New York Health & Racquet Club; RIP. Since I need classes as opposed to just doing my own thing in a gym, I joined Physique 57. After my 3 months at Physique, I was looking for something else mainly because of the way my bank account is set up. In comes ClassPass. If you didn’t know, ClassPass is a third party service that charges you a monthly flat fee but gives you access to hundreds of gyms and studios. While prices are location based, you can use your membership in another city. I have the NYC unlimited plan. It costs $200/month and allows you to visit each studio up to 3 times. Keep reading for a rundown of the classes and studios I visited during my first month.

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Thick Chick Workout Tips

Hey Lovers,

It’s been awhile, I know. Life. Anyway, because the Internet never forgets, Facebook decided to remind me of my chunky days. Before this “memory” I felt like I looked basically the same. However, you see the progress. Let’s discuss. 

Before-AfterI have always said that I have reverse body dysmorphia. By reverse I mean, no matter what my weight is, I think I look the same. My clothes have a tendency to disagree. Haters, I know. Like most other Americans, I eat my feelings. After I finished law school in 2012 I was unemployed for about 7 months. I had nothing but time. Time to think. Time to think about my feelings; then eat them. By the time I got a job in 2013, my weight had ballooned to nearly 190lbs and a size 14/16. At 5’4, 190lbs is fat. Don’t get me wrong; I was still cute. I was cute but also fat. I used my first paycheck to join Weight Watchers. My goal was to get back to my “normal” weight which was somewhere around 165lbs and a size 12. img_3157
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What’s in my gym bag

#GymSelfie

#GymSelfie

Hey Lovers, 

If you’re like me, you look to the Internet, blogs specifically, for most of the answers you need. A couple of months ago I joined a gym. I’ve never worked out at real a gym on a consistent basis so this was a big change for me. I got the membership through my job and I’m locked in. When I decided to join I was nervous. What am I supposed to bring? Will I be the only thick girl at the gym? What about my edges? Most of my angst was gym clothes, I must admit. I tried to find a “what’s in my gym bag?” post but none of them 100% applied to me so I had to piece together what I needed. Below are a few pictures of what I keep in my gym bag and some of my favorites. 

I got my water bottle from  Amazon and I love it. It keeps the water cold and it looks different from most other water bottles so the chances of it getting mixed up with someone else’s are low. I got a colored lock for the same reason.

I don’t shower at the gym because I’m weird like that. If you’re not going to shower, you need feminine wipes because excess moisture can cause yeast infections and ain’t nobody got time for that. 

I have 2 pairs of sneakers. I use the Reebok Crossfit sneakers for studio classes that require a lot of jumping. The toe box is flat and wide. I use the Nike Free run sneakers for the treadmill (and for anything that doesn’t match the Reeboks).

Moisture in your nether-regions can cause a yeast infection. Sweat and makeup remnants on your face can cause breakouts. I carry Purity cleanser in a travel bottle purchased from Duane Reade, astringent, and a moisturizer. I like the tea tree oil moisturizer from the Body Shop since it’s designed to minimize oil and blemishes.

I quickly learned that all sports bras are not created equal after a day of headlights during pilates. My favorite sports bra is the Knockout by Victoria’s Secret. It’s described as a bra within a bra. My favorite feature is the front zip; easy on, easy off. They’re pricey but definitely worth it. Not only will you be fully supported, the material wicks away moisture so you’ll stay comfortable. If you’re concerned about your coins like me, just keep an eye on the sale & clearance section. While these sports bras retail for $59-62, I’ve bought them on clearance for as low as $30. 

Since I go to the gym right after work, I don’t want to put my blazers on after working out without showering. Sometimes I do an outdoor bootcamp also. I got a VSX jacket that’s warm, washable and designed for sports.  

My favorite tops are from Under Armour. Check their outlet section online. I’ve found tops for as low as $20-30. I love that they’re cute and fit like regular tees. Some even have a slightly see through back. I like to add strappy back sports bras for visual interest. My particular gym bag is no longer available but you can find something similar here. As Black women we are constantly battling our hair. I got some moisture wicking headbands. At first I was skeptical but they actually work. My favorites are from Victoria’s Secret (no longer available) but Under Armour makes some similar ones. I put my hair (read weave) in a bun for the workout and make sure to cover my edges with the headband. 

Do you keep anything surprising in your gym bag? Comment below and let me know.