Jenna: Sunburned in a Snowstorm

 

 

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Oh, to be back there! Last week I was lucky enough to escape to Florida to visit one of my best friends. It was an amazing trip! In a lot of ways, it was exactly what I needed.

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Thanks to a few long walks to get coffee, a trip to the gym, and a pretty serious dance party in the living room until midnight, I hit a step goal high for me. Over 18k steps! It was nice to stay active while on my mini vacation.

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Friday we actually made it to the beach. I got a pretty serious sunburn thanks to it being cloudy, and not thinking I needed sunscreen for our long walk. I’ve written before about how much I love the beach. It just makes me feel better about … everything. Whenever I’m having a hard time, salt water can fix it – whether that is in the form on ocean, tears, or sweat.

It was amazing to see my friend! We also visited a local brewery while I was there, which is always a great time. I think the tasting set up was my favorite so far! Everyone needs a little popcorn while drinking beer!

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This trip was just what I needed, but I’ve also been a little sad since I’ve been back. It reminded me of a time when I was really sure about life and was surrounded by lots of people that just … get me. I still sometimes feel out of place here. That’s for a different day.

Rose: A Low Key Weekend

This weekend was super low key. As much as I want to fill up my weekends with activity, I’m starting to appreciate the quiet downtime. Next weekend I’ll be traveling, so I knew it was important to spend time in my home space. On Saturday, I woke up rather early, took care of a few chores (mostly cooking) and prepared myself for a huge, huge task: cleaning the house.

I did a deep clean of the apartment. It was needed. It took me three hours, but I can tell you my bathroom floors have never been so clean.

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Later that day, we had an impromptu game night with a few friends. I got to enjoy some red wine — a new favorite of mine — and a tasty recipe. I’ve been really watching my calories, so it was night to indulge just a little like this. We played a game called Flux that I’m still not sure I understand. But it’s always fun to learn something new.

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I served a few simple dips for my guests — mild salsa, mediterranean hummus and beet hummus. I’ve also been addicted to these rice crisps I found at Trader Joe’s. A serving size is 38 crisps for 120 calories. Seriously, you can’t beat that, and if you have a chip addiction, this can help with that.

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Simple. Low key. The way weekends should be. While I didn’t tackle an endless to-do list, I did get a few things done and had fun with my friends to boot. I’d call that a pretty great weekend.

Rose: A Little Organization

Sunday was a very bad weather day, so it was time for a little closet organization. The closet in my guest room has quickly become the place where things go to die. As a result, it looked something like this:

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Yeah. I know. It’s bad. Every time I would reach for a suitcase, or try to pull out Christmas decorations, something would inevitably fall. No system at all. Plus, there are boxes upon boxes in this closet of old photographs that need to be stored properly. That’s why I bought four giant tupperware containers, two for Christmas decor and two for photographs, tapes and old memorabilia. After several hours of M and I working collectively, the end result was perfect:

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By simply moving the dry rack, I can now get to my suitcases with ease. I can clearly see what’s in the bins, and I was even able to add some of my workout equipment. It may not look straight out of a magazine, but you know, it’s the little things sometimes that can feel like a big win. This before and after is all the proof I need.

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Rose: The Benefits of Drinking Water

This week we’re trying a new mini challenge in my online accountability group: drinking 8 ounces of water upon rising. While it’s important to drink water throughout the day, starting your day off with some H20 can really kick things into motion. A few of my challengers asked: Why is this so important? Below I explain some of the benefits behind forming this new habit.

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Water will rehydrate you. Imagine not drinking water for eight hours. That’s essentially what you’re doing when you sleep. Although your body might not recognize it, you’re dehydrated when you wake up. Reaching for a glass of water can fix that right away. Unfortunately, coffee does not hydrate you, even though it contains water. So stick with the pure stuff.

Water will flush out any toxins. This is where the lemon slice is key. Water with lemon will flush out toxins from your system and bring your digestive system to an equilibrium. This will help you process food more efficiently throughout the day.

Water will wake up your metabolism. This is especially true if you’re drinking cold water. Your body will work extra hard to bring that water up to your body’s temperature. Studies have shown that your metabolism can work 24 percent higher if you throw back a cold one.

Water is fuel for your brain. Did you know the brain is 75 percent water? When you’re dehydrated, your brain is operating on less fuel, so you feel drained, fatigued or moody. This could explain why you aren’t a morning person. Eight ounces later, you might feel like a new person.

Water can help you lose weight. Drinking water is one of the keys to losing weight. Oftentimes we think we’re hungry when we’re actually dehydrated. This is where water can help. Likewise, it stimulates feelings of fullness so you can avoid cravings throughout the day.

Do you drink water upon rising? Is this something you could add to your routine?

Rose & Jenna: Bar Method

Over the weekend, we attended a Bar Method class in Princeton. We’d never quite tried this kind of workout before, but we had coupons and were in need of a solid workout on a Saturday morning. A mixed level class fit our timeline, so we decided to give it a whirl.

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The Bar Method is similar to barre classes. Inspired by ballet, the exercises include small, isometric movements from your arms to your legs. Like ballet, you utilize a bar to perform many of these workouts. If done on a regular basis, you will see a lot of lift in your seat, thighs, abs and arms.

I’ll be the first to admit — we were nervous. We were both incredibly sore from our Friday workouts and weren’t sure how this was going to go. But we decided to do our best, take breaks when needed and just go with the flow.

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We were greeted by Amy upon arrival who showed us the facility and explained the class. She was a great instructor and made us feel welcome. She accepted an expired gift card, which was very generous, and made sure to check in on us throughout the class. She also remembered our names and would call out to us. She also adjusted us when we weren’t quite nailing the moves.

Because we had different experiences, we’ll break it down into individual reviews:

Rose: This workout utilized parts of my body I never target. The backs of my thighs and seat were incredibly sore the day after. I could tell that the tiny, isolated movements were really working, despite any pain I experienced. They also had equipment for shorter people; that was a huge plus for me. At certain points, I couldn’t quite reach the bar, so the extra foot pad helped.

Overall, I liked the workout, but this isn’t something I’d do on a regular basis. I like to sweat and really max myself out (hence me doing Max: 30), and I didn’t have this kind of experience with the Bar Method. I could see myself adding this kind of class in once a month. And at $25/class, that’s probably all I could afford anyway.

Jenna: This workout made me miss my ballet dancing days for sure. I hadn’t used a lot of those muscles in a while, and was definitely feeling the burn during class. To be honest, I thought I would be really sore in my butt and legs the next day and was fine. I liked the workout in the sense that it was something different, but I am not sure I would buy a monthly membership or anything. The $25 price tag is a bit high, and it just overall wasn’t really my thing. (I found myself checking the clock to see how close we were to finishing, and I hate that feeling when working out). However, when I’m training for my next race I think this would be great to work in monthly because it does force you to focus on your hips and core which is an area I need to focus on.  Amy and the staff at this location were great, so I would certainly recommend that you give it a try for yourself if you are in the area.

Overall, it’s always fun to try out a new workout once in a while. It helps when you have friends or cousins who want to join, too!

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