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We give so much to our relationships with our significant others, our friends and our family… but how often do we give attention to our relationships with food and movement? I learned the importance of this, the hard way.

In the beginning of my fitness journey I thought I needed to be extreme in order to see progression. I always go all in when I have a goal in mind – which is as positive as it is negative. I would hesitate going out with friends because I knew my evening would consist of saying no to tempting foods and passing on a glass of wine. I almost began to loathe being asked to attend events. I was exhausted trying to keep up. I began to question what this lifestyle was really doing for me. I reach my goals, sure… but at what cost?

I realized that this lifestyle wasn’t worth it and it made absolutely no sense depriving myself. I shouldn’t feel guilty indulging in one meal or spending time with the people I cared about. I realized I needed to learn the right ways to do this. How can I reach my goal while still having a life and feeling good? How can I still be balanced and still maintain my progress? The answer was simple: quit doing more and simply do less.

Here’s what I learned:

1. You don’t have to deprive yourself.

Realistically speaking, there is only one way to lose body fat: be in a caloric deficit (and the deficit doesn’t need to be 1000 calories). If you want that one meal on the weekend then GO for it! It wont make or break the results you have made thus far. If you want that glass of wine, drink it and ENJOY it. There is no need to feel guilty afterward. As long as you are eating well often and moving often, you will be fine. Live your life

2. You don’t have to eat salad every day.

Don’t get me wrong… I do LOVE me a good salad, but I definitely don’t eat them all the time. We are conditioned to believe that we have to eat like rabbits and aren’t allowed to eat food that taste good. How boring of a life, right? So instead of feeling like a slave to food, I learned that it really isn’t that hard to eat healthy. I eat pasta, rice, and meals with sauces. Instead of buying low-fat this or low-calorie that, I focus on the individual ingredients I put into my body (foods typically in their most natural state / unprocessed). Food is fuel. Food is not the enemy.

Everyone is different. Do your research and go back to the basics. No need to feel like you’re “on a diet.” Mindset is everything! A lot of people believe carbs are bad, when in reality carbs provide our body with energy. Your body NEEDS them. It’s all about moderation and portion control.

3,You don’t have to kill yourself in the gym, simply MOVE.

How are you feeling about working out? I mean really… Even as personal trainer, I have had moments where I was like ugh I am just NOT FEELING it. So how do I stay motivated and LOVE moving my body daily? Seriously though, I actually get excited about doing something daily to move my body. This isn’t always a high intensity workout or a heavy lift day. Sometimes, this isn’t even a cardio day. This can literally be a quick walk, or bike ride outside.

It doesn’t take much to feel amazing and just MOVE. Don’t get stuck in thinking that it always has to be intense. You will make such a difference if you just spend about 15-20 minutes a day doing SOMETHING.

Rebuild your relationship with food and movement, it’s a lot easier than working against it. Once you see the magic in simplicity it’ll be easy to maintain. For me, wellness is never just an “end goal” type of thing… it’s a lifestyle.

What is FabFitFun? It’s a seasonal box of goodies made to feed your soul and allows you to indulge in fashion finds, glam beauty secrets and fabulous fitness products. Every three months you get to look forward to a box filled with the newest most awesome items, hand-picked for you by the FabFitFun team! The products are full-size and delivered right to your door step.

It’s FabFitFun’s 5th Anniversary! Here are some of the company’s highlights since its inception.

  • The first box launched in the Spring of 2013.
  • Customization for select memberships was introduced in the Winter of 2014  to allow customers to pick and choose the design and color of certain products. 
  • The “add on” feature was implemented in the Fall of 2015. This lets you shop super-discounted products that ship for free with your box (now over 100 + products to select from)
  • In the Fall 2015 FabFitFun collaborated with their first charity “The Purple Purse Foundation”
  • March of 2016 the Community Forum was launched as a place for members to chat about the box and products as well as receive exclusive news, content and spoilers.
  • More recently the FabFitFun TV app was introduced, where as a member you have exclusive access to a library of content including workouts from elite fitness instructors, guided mediation and lots of different cooking videos.

So if you’re a fitness fashionista, shopaholic obsessed with keeping up with the latest beauty products and fashion trends take a look what’s inside this season’s box!

WHAT’S IN THE 2018 SPRING BOX

1 –Rachel Pally Reversible Clutch $60

Bonjour!!! This is the cutest clutch and a is a perfect compliment to any outfit. Choose from three different patterns:  Bloom Zahara and Paradise.  Bonus, this purse is also reversible, so you get two for one.

FabFitFun 5th Anniversary. What's inside the Spring Box?

2 – Murad Skin Perfecting Lotion $40

This ultra light, oil-free moisturizer helps blemish-pron skin stay smooth and healthy while providing hydration. Minimizes the appearance of pores, refines texture, and smooths redness. YES PLEASE!!!

FabFitFun 5th Anniversary. What's inside the Spring Box?
Murad Skin Perfecting Lotion

3- ISH Lip Statement Palette $42

With these nudes and pops of color, your lips will create a statement! These 11 intensely pigmented shades and 1 tinted lip topper are enriched with rose extracts, shea butter, jojoba oil, and aloe vera for extra moisture and easy wear. Mix any shades to create infinite combinations of lip colors, customized by you! Add the tinted lip topper for a hint of sheen and a touch of added moisture. Paraben free. Gluten free. Cruelty free and absolutely stunning! Pucker up babes!

FabFitFun 5th Anniversary. What's inside the Spring Box?
ISA Lip Statement Palette

4- Anderson Lilley Sunset Collection Candle $45

Choose from Manhattan Beach, Linen and Super Bloom scent. These beautiful candles are made with hand poured coconut wax blend and cotton, lead-free wick allowing the candle delivers a clean, even burning fragrance. Held perfectly in a lovely copper colored holder.

5 – Dermelect Cosmeceuticals Makeover Concealing Ridge Filler $18

This nail polish helps neutralize your nail color with a natural pink hue while delivering proteins, vitamins and moisture. Protein-peptide, ProSina, strengthens weakened nails and helps restore them to a healthier, youthful state, less prone to splitting and breakage. Pentavitin, a moisture-binding agent, improves brittle nails and increases flexibility.

6 – KNC Beauty All Natural Collagen Infused Lip Mask  $24.99

Their formula blends moisturizing rose flower oil, cherry extract and vitamin E for a gorgeous pout from the inside out. Just say no to lifeless lips. You feel that tingle at the end? Yeah, that’s that the collagen kicking in— going to work to give you that full, enviable look. Not only does it hydrate and plump, the deep conditioning mask will 100% change your lipstick game—acting as a smooth primer for all your favorite shades. Pucker up. babes!

FabFitFun 5th Anniversary. What's inside the Spring Box?
All Natural Collagen Infused Lip Mask

7 – Ettika Day Dreamer Tassel Earrings $58

These super trendy tassel earnings  are to die for! Beautiful and light! Put these cascading beauties on and watch them dazzle you all spring and summer long!

FabFitFun 5th Anniversary. What's inside the Spring Box?
Daydreamer Tassel Earrings

8-Free People x Understated Leather Starry Eyed Travel Eye Mask $40

Get your beauty sleep while you travel the world in our limited-edition travel eye mask in collaboration with Free People. Made of vegan leather with embroidered metallic stars, this sleep mask features a removable cooling eye insert and fully adjustable elastic band around the back for the best fit while you catch some Zzz’s. Available in ballet pink, mint or light grey, this eye mask comes in a reusable clear zip pouch, making it the perfect travel companion.  So damn cozy!!

FabFitFun 5th Anniversary. What's inside the Spring Box?
Free People x Understated Leather Starry Eyed Travel Eye Mask

9- Physique 57 Massage Roller $20

This roller will do wonders for your sore and achy muscles. Will help to improve flexibility, break up scar tissue and keep tender muscles at bay. FYI – I freaking LOVE this product!!!

FabFitFun 5th Anniversary. What's inside the Spring Box?
Physique 57 Massage Roller

 

These nine items above retail at $331.99

My favorite three “I can’t live without (already) items” are the Physique 57 Massage Roller (feels soooo good!) ISA Lip Statement Palette (all shade of pinks and reds) and the Daydream Tassel Earrings (so trendy). The products alone are valued at $120.

So it goes without saying that $49.99 is an incredible price to pay for a FabFitFun box! SIGN UP HERE

Are you a FabFitfun member? Let me know what your thoughts about the 2018 Spring Box or your favorite items. Share this post someone who might like to subscribe.

(check out the 2017 Spring Box)

Here are 8 reasons why adding a little champagne to your diet is good for your health. Cheers!

Until recently, champagne was typically consumed by the rich and famous or served on very special occasions, like on New Years Eve or at weddings. But consumption of all types of sparkling wines are on the rise over the past few years. I think it may be in large part to the number of Italian Proseccos that have allowed people to dip their toes in the bubbly category at an affordable price.

So regardless if you’re connoisseur of sparkling wines and sip only the best champagne or if you’d rather have a nice glass of Spanish Cava or Italian Prosecco, adding a little bit of bubbles to your diet can be good for your health, and your spirits!

“Always keep a bottle of Champagne in the fridge for special occasions. Sometimes, the special occasion is that you’ve got a bottle of Champagne in the fridge.” – Hester Browne

8 Reasons To Add A Little Champagne To Your Diet  1- Champagne contains much fewer calories than wine

Trying to keep your weight in check, on a diet or counting calories? Choosing champagne over wine or beer is always your best alcoholic beverage of choice. There’s approximately 78-90 calories in a 4 oz glass of champagne vs 112 – 129 calories in a 5 oz glass of wine (varies between red and white) and a typical 12-ounce glass of beer will run you between 153 -171 calories.

2- Champagne makes your skin sparkle

Champagne contains resveratrol, a potent antioxidant which acts as protection against skin damage. Splash last night’s left-over bubbles on your face to reap the anti-ageing benefits. Champagne is also considered a natural toner, which can reduce inflammation and redness, thanks to the polyphenols  (plant chemicals with antioxidant properties) and tartaric acid. It can work wonders on oily and acne skin as the high concentration of antioxidants will help soak excess oil and sebum, leaving you with a natural glow.

“Champagne is the only wine that leaves a woman beautiful after drinking it.” Madame de Pompadour

3- Abundant in anti-oxidants

All champagne is made from red and white grapes which both contain high levels of resveratrol, an antioxidant that prevents damage to blood vessels, reduces bad cholesterol and prevents blood clots.

4 – Good for your heart

Champagne has polyphenol antioxidants that is known to reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases and strokes. A flute of champagne a day can lower your blood pressure and is good for your heart and blood circulation.

5 – Shiny Hair

8 Reasons To Add A Little Champagne To Your Diet

Rid your scalp of product build-up, making way for oil and other essential nutrients. Champagne can act as an amazing hair rinse and add volume to your locks. Bonus, the golden color of champagne can help bring out lighter highlights, leaving blonde hair with an envy-worthy shine.

6 – Bubble bath

A hot bathtub is a great way to decompress and ease your tense muscles. But now you can turn your every day  bath into an exfoliating treat by simply throwing in a few extra bubbles! The carbon dioxide in champagne acts as a gentle exfoliator and helps to soothe dry skin. The acidity will also leave your skin soft and supple.

8 Reasons To Add A Little Champagne To Your Diet

7 – Cheer up!

Feeling down? Sip on some champagne as it contains natural trace elements that may help boost your mood, says Tran Ky, MD, co-author of The Healing Power of Champagne.  Double the power of positivity by pairing a glass of champers with a healthy fish dish. The omega-3s will also increase your happiness not to mention the crisp taste of champers is a perfectly delight with seafood.

8 – Salad fizz

Got some left over from last night’s bash? Use it to make a light vinaigrette for your salad. “Replace orange and other fruit juices with champagne” says , Health’s Senior Food and Nutrition Editor, Frances Largeman-Roth. The acidity helps cut through the richness of the oil, making it taste lighter and brighter on your tongue than other dressings. Champagne Recipes 

So drink up ladies!

“I only drink champagne on two occasions, when I’m in love and when I’m not.” – Coco Chanel

8 Reasons To Add A Little Champagne To Your Diet

What’s your favorite bottle of bubbly? Please comment below and share this article with all your champagne sipping friends!

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Say goodbye to Sunday meal-prep!

No More Sunday Meal-Prep Thanks to 2GuysWithKnives  No more Sunday meal-prep thanks to 2GuysWithKnives!  A Vancouver based company focused on convenient, highly nutritious, culinary level meals is not your typical food delivery service.

Sergio Pereira, owner and Executive Chef, moved to Canada from Brazil 11 years ago. His specialty is pairing healthy nutrition with his knowledge of world cuisine and culinary mastery. Co-owner Patrick Carr is a certified personal training specialist, metabolic nutritionist, and obstacle course race master. His background as an athlete and nutritional expert is a perfect compliment to Sergio’s flavorful dishes.

The two men are dedicated to providing their customers with delicious, nutritious, gluten-free meals while always offering the most well-balanced and healthy options.

No More Sunday Meal-Prep Thanks to 2GuysWithKnives  2GuysWithKnives offer free delivery at your convenience and the meals are very affordable. The menu is updated weekly to ensure you get a variety and are never get bored of eating the same dish. All the meals are designed with lean protein, low glycemic carbohydrates & tasty veggies. Entirely gluten free and created based on fitness nutrition guidelines 2GuysWithKnives have elevated the food delivery standards by providing high quality and savory healthy meals.

These days it seems we all have hectic schedules. Personally, my days are jammed;  between juggling my consulting business and my online business my free time is precious.  I need to schedule walking my dog, hitting the gym, stocking up on groceries and even girls nightout.  So needless to say, I’m always open to new ways I can save some time. I work from home most days because it saves 30 minutes (round trip) in commuting.  Plus add up the time I don’t have to blow-dry my hair and I have an extra 90 minutes.

Meal prep has always been timing consuming and daunting to me. But for over 10 years I’ve been pretty consistent on setting time aside on Sunday evenings. If I don’t have half a dozen chicken breasts cooked or a fresh pot of turkey chili made my week gets chaotic and I start making really bad food choices.

No More Sunday Meal-Prep Thanks to 2GuysWithKnives
Me making bad food choices when I don’t meal prep

I placed my first order at 2GuysWithKnives on Thursday evening and the food was delivered Sunday afternoon. I bought two main courses,  2 salads and a bag of protein balls for my sweet cravings. The total with tax and free delivery was $68.25.  Additionally, I spent $30.00 at the grocery store on fruits, vegetables, nuts, eggs, and almond milk. Being this was my first order, I wasn’t sure if it would be enough food to fuel me through my busy work schedule and daily workouts?

The short answer is no, I ran out of meals on Thursday.  That being said, the meals were fresh, very flavorful and packed with nutrients! For me, the entrees (rectangle containers) were big enough for two generous portions. But more importantly, I saved about 30-45 minutes a day in the kitchen! This week I placed a bigger order to ensure I would have enough food to keep me going all week long!

Another bonus is that each meal has a detailed label with ALL ingredients used and nutritional fact and information. Below is my first order.

No More Sunday Meal-Prep Thanks to 2GuysWithKnives

Shake your bon bon – Winter Time Shaker Salad – smoked applewood baked chicken layered with shredded beets, carrots, green peas, brown jasmine rice, crisp romaine lettuce and yummy vanilla pear vinaigrette (organic pears, white wine vinegar, honey, vanilla, spices) calories 286 / protein 25g / carbs 42g / fat 2g / fiber 10g

 

 

No More Sunday Meal-Prep Thanks to 2GuysWithKnives  Policia Fashionista – Mighty Kale & Romaine Cesare Salad – our creamy dairy free Cesare dressing (lemon juice, dijon, garlic, soft tofu, nutritional yeast, avocado oil, spices), tossed with grilled chicken, crisp romaine, kale and oven roasted turkey bacon topped with walnut-hemp parmesan (walnuts, hemp seeds, garlic, nutritional yeast) & turmeric spiced crispy chickpea croutons (chickpeas, turmeric, paprika, black pepper, coconut oil) calories 494 / protein 55g / carbs 28g / fat 18g / fiber 12g

No More Sunday Meal-Prep Thanks to 2GuysWithKnives  That’s amore – Chicken Bruschetta Pasta – gluten free pasta noodles tossed with baked chicken, roma tomato, basil, black olives, kale, artichokes, sun-dried tomato, garlic, spices & balsamic glaze. calories 491 / protein 43g / carbs 55g / fat 11g / fiber 8g

 

 

No More Sunday Meal-Prep Thanks to 2GuysWithKnives  Brazilian Carnival – Grilled & Baked Montreal Chicken Breast with traditional Brazilian black beans (pureed marinade blend of onion, parsley, peppers, tomato, cilantro, spices), zesty tomato-parsley vinaigrette & brown jasmine rice

calories 485 / protein 52g / carbs 49g / fat 9g / fiber 7g

 

 

No More Sunday Meal-Prep Thanks to 2GuysWithKnives  Baobab Protein Bites (7) Medjool dates, raw almonds, coconut oil, raw cocoa, almond butter & vegan protein powder (yellow pea protein isolate, organic hemp protein concentrate, sacha inchi protein, organic sunflower protein, xanthan gum, natural & organic vanilla flavours, stevia leaf extract) dusted with African super fruit balboa powder into little gems of rockstar magic.

calories 457 / protein 14g / carbs 53g / fat 21g

 

In summary,  if eating healthy is a priority in your life, you crave some variety in your  meals, and would like to some free up a little time from your crazy schedule I highly recommend you try 2GuysWithKnive.

There is no commitment, the minimum order is 3 items (approx $45) PLUS you can customize your order with any specific dietary restrictions or needs you may have. For more questions visit the FAQ page.

I’d love to hear your feedback, scroll all the way down and leave a comment! Remember sharing is caring! Please spread this article by using the social media icons below 🙂

Quick tip – Pair  champagne with fish and chicken dishes.  There are fewer calories than beer or wine and it’s also good for your skin. Pinch me I am dreaming? Stay tuned for my next blog which will reveal all the health benefits of bubbles!

Health & Happiness xo

____________________________________________________________________________________

FIT & Flirty’s 1st week with *2GuysWithKnives

Breakfast Snack Lunch Snack Dinner Extra
Monday

6:30pm

Hot Power Core at @Oxygen

Shakeology (banana & cup of almond milk) coffee/black *Policia Fashionista Chicken Cesar Salad 1/2 of the container mid-day: apple and dozen almond pre-workout: *Baobab Protein Bite *That’s amore – Chicken Bruschetta Pasta (1/3 of the container)  2 Vday chocolate hearts at the office
Tuesday

6:30pm

Hot Barre Fusion @Oxygen

2 boiled eggs, multigrain toast and apple coffee/black dozen almonds *Policia Fashionista Chicken Cesar Salad 1/2 of the container  *4 Baobab Protein Bites *Brazilian Carnival – Chicken Breast celery & organic peanut butter
Wednesday

6:30pm

Hot Power Core @Oxygen

Shakeology (banana & cup of almond milk)  coffee/black *Shake your bon bon – Winter Time Shaker Salad. Apple and dozen almond Banana *That’s amore – Chicken Bruschetta Pasta – finished the container  2 Vday chocolate hearts at the office
Thursday

4pm HIIT Cals @Kondi

 2 scrambled eggs & 2 multi grain toast. coffee/black *Brazilian Carnival – Chicken Breast

done all 2guyswithknives

 Almonds Chocolate banana shakeology  Apple

Additional  Articles ->  Vancouver Fitness Studio Reviews and Best Cupcakes in Vancouver

 

On January 20th I arrived to Fit and Fly Girl Luxury Fitness Retreat in Tamarindo, Costa Rica. This unique fitness retreat series is organized by owner Rebecca Garland. Her desire is to bring women together, combining travel with the pursuit of a balanced and healthy lifestyle.

A fitness retreat is about escaping  your everyday life and taking the time to focus on yourself. It gives you the opportunity to reflect, learn healthier practices, workout with a personal trainer and discover new fitness tips and exercises. Many fitness retreats include spa therapies, a body assessment and adventure and wellness activities. This type of travel can be particularly popular with solo travelers, as singles are likely to meet like-minded individuals.

Attending a fitness retreat is a great way to take a break from work, family stresses or any other dilemma.  It can serve as a great recovery or reset after a break-up or a personal loss. Whatever you may need time away from a fitness retreat offers an escape to adjust your perspective, regain control of your life and maybe even discover aspects about yourself that have been dormant or you didn’t know existed.  When dealing with stress or self-doubt it can help to remove yourself from your current situation and share your stories with others who can offers a different perspective and help you to see another way of dealing with your situation.

Fit & Fly Girl luxury fitness retreats provide a well-rounded approach to fitness getaways; blending together fitness, wellness, culture, adventure, nutrition, and pampering.

Overall, the purpose of Fit and Fly Girl is to empower women to travel in style, to find adventure, to create meaningful and lasting friendships, and above all, to take care of your mind, body and spirit!

Fit and Fly Girl Luxury Fitness Retreats
Body By Hannah & NYC Pretty

At this particular fitness retreat we were a group of 16 ladies staying in the luxurious Don Vito Villa. We were spoiled with nutritious and delicious meals prepared by our own personal in house Chef Fabien Mandrea.  Our body assessment, daily workouts and yoga practices were all taught by Hannah Davis, a certified strength and conditioning specialist, also known for her training program called Body By Hannah.

Christine BibboHerr the fitness and fashion blogger from @NYCPretty was also part of our fitness group and he husband John a professional photographer, took on the role of “paparazzi”,  capturing our moments of pain and dripping sweat.

 

Here is a summary of my week at Fit & Fly Girl’s luxury fitness retreat in Costa Rica.

Fit and Fly Girl Luxury Fitness Retreats
Fit & Fly Girl’s Costa Rica Jan 2018 Schedule

Day One – Saturday January 20th

All the ladies arrived at the villa and Hannah conducted individual fitness assessments to learn our personal fitness objective for the week. She also took our body measurements and before and after photos to show us how much progress can really be made in seven days.

We had our first body shake out class which was a short 30 minute workout with dynamic stretching to open up our tight muscles after a long day of travel and prepare us for the week ahead.

After dinner we sat around getting to know each other.

Day Two – Sunday January 21st

Rise and shine at 7 :00 am, inject caffeine before a short foam rolling session and we were out the door before 8 am for our first Full Body & Strength Class at the gym next door to the villa. This hour workout was designed to build muscle and tone us up. The workout included eight strength training stations performing 3 x 1 minutes per exercises. Stronger is better!

10:30 am – Time to Surf!

“You can’t stop the waves but you can learn to surf “⠀

Fit and Fly Girl Luxury Fitness Retreats
Surf Day Fitness Retreat January 2018

This was my first time surfing; I wasn’t sure if I’d enjoy it, but it was an amazing!! Thanks to the patient instructors at Iguana Surf I  managed to get up five times and I fell a more times than I can count; I have the bruises to prove it.  In all aspect of life you should never be afraid to try something new and push your limits!

Later that afternoon we took advantage of our free time to watch the NFL playoffs. Go Jacksonville Jaguars!

5:30 pm – We wrapped up the day up with a vinyasa yoga and guided meditation. A much needed stretch session after a tough day of surfing.

Day Three – Monday January 22nd

8:00 am Body FHITT class at the beach. This was a team based high interval class to improve our metabolic conditioning and burn max calories in the shortest amount of time. The heat and sand made this workout extra challenging,

Down time I spent the afternoon at Coco Spa getting my sore muscles massaged.

Day Four – Tuesday January 23rd

You don’t inspire your teammates by showing the how amazing you are, you inspire them by showing them how amazing they are.” – Robyn Benincasa

Fit and Fly Girl Luxury Fitness Retreats
Body Team Training Class by Body By Hannah

8 am we were back to the beach for a Body Team Training Class. (My personal favorite workout of the week) This was a partner-based beach workout which had us focused on pushing our physical limits as we accumulated points for our team. There is something very powerful about working with a partner and not wanting to let down your teammates. I personally thrive with a some friendly competition!

On Tuesday evening we had the pleasure of going to the La Senda labyrinth. Unlike a maze you can not get lost because a labyrinth has only one path which symbolizes our life’s journey and takes us inward guiding us to find out who we really are. We had a guided meditation in the middle of the labyrinth which was a magical experience for me. Another  marvelous dinner was prepared for us on the  La Senda property using fresh organic vegetable grown on the scared land.

Day 5 – Wednesday January 24th

8 am workout in the backyard at the Don Vito Villa. The 60 minute body power class was focused on building power and helping us to tap into our fast switch muscle fibers to stay quick and powerful,

Fit and Fly Girl Luxury Fitness Retreats
Hill Sprint Runners

Followed by a 30 minute optional hill sprint workout, which of course I was keen to partake!  All those years of running in higher elevations and hills of Vancouver BC proved to be good training for this workout.

We spent the rest of the day soaking in the beauty of Tamarindo on a boat, sipping cold cocktails, waddling in the water and just hanging out.

 

Hills. We love them. We hate them. They make us stronger. They make us weaker. Today I chose to embrace hills. – Hal Higdon

Day 6 – Thursday January 25th

Adventure day: fun filled day included zip lining, a mud bath, horseback riding, rafting and much more!

Fit and Fly Girl Luxury Fitness Retreats
Fit and Fly Girl Luxury Fitness Retreat Adventure Day

Day 7 – Friday January 26th

Time to double up!

8 am. Body FHITT workout at the beach.  A super high intensity interval class designed to improve our metabolic conditioning and burn maximum calories in the shortness amour of time.

That’s afternoon I had time to relax at the spa again for a facial before we went back to the beach for a sunset body burn out class. An all body weight exercises to burnout the legs, arms and abs like nothing we’d done yet.

Although every woman on this retreat had a different fitness level, background and reason to travel to Costa Rica, we all had two things in common: we all wanting to better ourselves physically and I think we all had some kind of  personal quest. Some were seeking new experiences or adventure, others wanted to establish new fitness and health habits. Some wanted to step away from their daily grind and evaluate life and break out of their comfort zone and other others wanted to make new connections.

Personally I got all of the above and more from this experience. The Fit and Fly Girl luxury fitness retreat combined my two loves; fitness and travel and gave me time to reset and evaluate many things of my life. Thanks to our personal trainer Hannah (who was extremely relatable)  after only seven days I walked away stronger and feeling inspired to push myself  further on my personal fitness journey. I think we can all agree we shared personal and physical breakthroughs, lots sweat, laughter and some wine too! We all made special memories and real friendships were created! I feel blessed to have been part of such a powerful, determined, strong, creative and caring group of women!

“Its easy to spot the strong women. They’re the ones lifting each other up!”

Fit and Fly Girl Luxury Fitness Retreats
Fit and Fly Girl Costa Rica Group January 2018

If you like fitness and would like to travel to new locations that you may not otherwise visit on your own, if you’re looking to connect with like-minded women, then what are you waiting for? Step out of comfort zone and get ready because it’s your time to fly!

Contact me about the large range of fitness retreat locations and availability.

 

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I have 10 reasons why SoulCycle is the best spin studio. This fitness phenomenon is a New York City-based indoor cycling company founded in 2006;  with studios in nine U.S. states and two Canadian provinces.  As of 2016, SoulCycle had 85 locations in the United States with approximately 20,000 people riding every week.

Athlete, Legend, Warrior, Renegade, Rockstar, SOUL CYCLE”

My first SoulCycle ride was in San Francisco in November 2015 and it changed my spinning expectations.  I’ve been to a dozen different studios since, and not to say I didn’t enjoy every single workout (cause there’s no such things as a bad workout right?) but no ride has come close. It’s like when you meet the guy of your dreams, and then he vanishes…you’ll meet other people, but the feeling just isn’t the same…

So when the Vancouver location opened this summer, I was worried… would it be as magical? Or would it shatter the beautiful memories of my first time?  I had to find out; on Saturday I attended the 11:45 am ride lead by Daniela and I’m ecstatic, it was everything I remembered and more! Little fun fact, Kelly Rippa was in my class!

10 Reasons Why SoulCycle Is The Best Spin Studio
Photo from Well+Good

Here are my 10 reasons why SoulCycle is the best spin studio:

1.Spinning® has been around since the late 80’s but SoulCycle created the craze. 

2.  A perfectly branded “feel good” company that practices what it preaches. The SoulCycle riders loyalty is proof of that; in 2015 there were 934,500 rides, 25,641 classes, and 10,378 rides per day.

3. Extremely courteous, knowledgeable and friendly staff. The instructor training program is eight-weeks long. But the company also created a ‘Soul University’ with over 45 proprietary training programs to scale the distinctive culture and service of its studio operations.

4. A “clique” free zone, where everyone is made to feel part of the family! In class, the instructors encourage interaction with your neighbor, which opens communication and creates an uplifting feeling in room.  There’s also constant dialogue with riders through ‘Your Soul Matters’ team, responding to 50,000 rider emails annually, and Twitter feeds.

5. Well organized, beautifully designed, spacious, and clean studios.

6. The service is on point! From the second you check in, customer services representatives makes sure you’re informed and helpful staff members come around the spin room and ask every single person if they need help setting up their bike before the ride starts.

7. A high vibbin’ candle lit room, with heart-pounding tracks and inspiring mantras from your instructor will help you push your physical limits and guarantees a great sweat sesh! Instructors are more than just guiding through the ride: they remind you that you’re stronger than the voice in your head that says you can’t.” You don’t have to be here, you GET to be here!”

8. SoulCyle fitness apparel and swag is cool AF!

9. Giving back!  SoulCycle hosts over 300 charity rides per year; giving organization of all sizes the opportunity to join together and raise money for much-needed causes in a fun and inspiring way!

10.State of the art bikes! The SoulCycle Next Generation spin bike is sleek, modern and technically advanced! No more sore butts, these bikes ensure a comfortable ride!

10 Reasons Why SoulCycle Is The Best Spin Studio

SoulCycle Next Generation Spin Bike

Oxygen Hot Yoga and Fitness Kitsilano  Fall has officially hit the west coast; torrential downpours and gusty winds are likely to be with us for the next five months. After only two days of darkness my body was desperate for some heat and since I can’t just hop a flight to Hawaii I decided on the next best thing; a workout at Oxygen Hot Yoga & Fitness.  The Kitsilano location opened up few blocks away from my place, so I decided to go try a class.

Oxygen Hot Yoga & Fitness is not a typically yoga studio. First of all,  the studios are heated with far infrared heat which has extraordinary heath benefits such as; improves your immune system, reduces toxins and wast minerals, helps reduce stress, burns extra calories and helps control weight gain. It’s also been proven to help diminish cellulite and improve skin tone, plus can strengthen the cardiovascular system, relieve pain from arthritis, sprains, strains and over worked muscles.

You can indulge in a wide variety of yoga classes such as “Hot Yoga Rise & Shine”  – Mix sun salutations, balance poses, standing poses with strengthening poses and deep stretches. Early morning yoga is a great way to center yourself, listen to your body and set an intention. But if you’re looking for something more powerful, I welcome you to try one of the many fitness classes such as “Hot Cardio Fusion” –  A intense cardio party that helps keep your heart healthy and burn fat.  View the full schedule

The Oxygen Yoga & Fitness mantra is “I Love My Life” which is written all over the studio and  the fitness instructors have you recite it at the end of every single class; expect nothing but good. positive and friendly vibes! The room is hot approx 30 degrees and the lights are usually dimed. If you’re in a yoga class the mood is calm and meditative but in the fitness classes  you can expect loud music and very high energy! You’ll need your  yoga mat, a yoga towel, a face towel and WATER! Be prepared to SWEAT A LOT!

“No one has ever drowned in sweat.” – Lou Holtz

I hadn’t been to a “hot class” since February of this year,  so I decided to looked up my sign in records at the Olympic Village/Fairview location from February 2016 to end February 2017. I attended 155 classes (13 classes per month or 3.5 classes per week for a year). WOWZA! So I thought it best to ease the hot classes back into my fitness schedule this week.

Monday October 16th 7:30 pm – Combo at Kondi 30 minutes of a total body TRX workout to strengthen and tone and 30 minutes of Callanetics to lengthen and tighten your muscles.
Tuesday October 17th 6:30 pm Oxygen Hot Yang/Ying Yoga lead by Sandra: first class back and forgot how HAWWWT it get’s in there.  The yoga teacher was friendly and had a meditative voice; this much needed deep stretch was painful yet ohhhh so good!
Wednesday October 18th 7:15 pm TRX class at Kondi is a core-focused workout which uses your own body weight and angle to determine the difficulty.
Thursday October 19th 6:30 pm Oxygen Hot Fast and Furious Fusion Challenge Level 2/3 with Holly. This class was kickass ! One hour of non-stop heart pumping cardio and strength training! I felt amazing after! This class confirmed I’d to signing up again!
Friday October 20th – Rest day
Saturday October 21st 11:15 am – Combo Kondi 30 minutes of a total body TRX workout to strengthen and tone and 30 minutes of Callanetics to lengthen and tighten your muscles.
NFL Sunday October 22nd – 4:30 pm 6km hilly run
Monday October 23rd 6:30 pm Oxygen Hot Power Core with Lindsey!! One of my favorite teacher’s from the Fairview location.  This class ABS-olutely rocked!!!  This class incorporates yoga, weights, resistance training and cardio into a fast paced heart pumping core blasting session!

Having only been back for a week, I can already see and feel the benefits of combining my fitness routine in the far infrared heat. My body leans out and builds muscle so much faster, my skin is glowing, I push myself to my physical limit in each session and I’ve been sleeping like a baby! Plus working out in the heat is a good way to prepare for the outdoor workouts I will be doing on my luxury fitness retreat in Costa Rica. Not to mention, all my fitness needs are met under on roof with classes ranging from yoga, barre, cardio, core, strengthening and more!

“I will make sweat my best accessory, I will run harder than my mascara.”

If you’re a Vancouverite, Oxygen Yoga & Fitness is a must! Especially in the winter months! But don’t take my word for it, for only $10.00 you can try it yourself for a week or for $49.00 have unlimited access for a month. With 35 locations in British Columbia and 11 more opening soon there’s sure to be a studio near you!

Have you tried Oxygen Yoga & Fitness? What’s your favorite local studio these days?

Leave a comment below!

Namaste xo

 

Where to get FIT, have fun and be fabulous in Vancouver? I get asked “Which gym do you go to?” all the time.  According to  StatsCan as of December 2016 Metro Vancouver had over 300 fitness facilities, plus 19 in Abbostford and 48 in Victoria, B.C. Some of the biggest fitness chains being Steve Nash Fitness World with 23 locations and counting. Anytime Fitness, Club 16 Trevor Linden, Goodlife, Curves and OrangeTheory . Vancouver also has 23 community centers who offer gym services, add to the mix yoga-only studio, Pilates studios, Cross-Fit Clubs, Spinning studios, boxing and martial-arts gyms, work place fitness facilities, condo gyms, tennis clubs & golf clubs and  independent personal trainers how does someone decide where to sign up?

For years my fitness routine included two personal trainer session per week and and running about 50 km per week. I was obsessed with logging my miles; rain, snow or scorching heat, I would be out there pounding the pavement. But after completing four half-marathons and a full marathon I now find myself seeking different ways of staying fit. About a year ago I signed up for Class Pass and I’ve discovered never ending variety and constant physical challenge.

Get FIT, have fun & be fabulous in Vancouver
Oxygen Yoga & Fitness

The first class I signed up for with the Class Pass app was at Oxygen Yoga & Fitness (564 W Broadway,  Vancouver,  B.C.) Don’t let the name fool you, this is NOT your typical yoga studio. I tried the Hot, Fast and  Furious class and I was instantly hooked. These yoga and fitness classes are conducted in an infrared sauna. The workouts vary from boot camp style classes (with weights), Pilates Fusion, Hot Power Core, Yoga and more. I guarantee Oxygen Yoga & Fitness will challenge you, push you and get you chiseled for the summer.

For addicts like me you can sign up for an unlimited monthly package directly at Oxygen Yoga & Fitness. They have multiple locations throughout the city with more popping up soon! Bring your yoga mat, full length towel, face towel and lots of water!

Get FIT, have fun & be fabulous in Vancouver
Kondi Studio Vancouver

My second favorite facility is Kondi Fitness  (100-1462 W. 8th Avenue, Vancouver, B.C.) This boutique studio  specializes in fun and challenging group classes featuring Callanetics, Pilates, TRX resistance workouts for stronger legs and H.I.I.T.  workout guarantees to help you become a faster runner.  When I first walked in I was a bit intimidated; everyone was modelesque (trainers and students alike) but it didn’t take me long to feel welcomed. The instructors/trainers are incredibly friendly and knowledgeable; they take the time to correct your form and push you to your physical limit.  If you’re looking for a real challenge or want to bring your training to the next level, this studio is made for you. The classes are TOUGH, especially the  H.I.I.T. series so bring alot of energy, your water bottle and be prepared to get breathless!

Vancouver saw the biggest snow falls since 1969 this winter; the sidewalks have been slippery and covered in snow for months so instead of my outdoor run I’ve been booking spin classes for my cardio blast. My current favorite spin studio is:

Get FIT, have fun & be fabulous in Vancouver
East Wood Cycle Vancouver and North Vancouver

Eastwood Cycle (154 East Hastings Street, Vancouver, B.C.), nestled between Yaletown and Gastown, is a gorgeous 4,500 sq spinning facility.  You can ride to the rhythm of the beats in the Icon Class or train for endurance and strength training in the Athlete Class. I love this studio, especially for my early morning workouts—the beats are super loud and you ride in the dark! The instructors focus on empowerment and motivation to make sure your heart gets pounding!

Get FIT, have fun & be fabulous in Vancouver
Pure Barre Vancouver

My latest find on the Class Pass app is Pure Barre (1907 West 4th Ave, Vancouver, B.C.) These 55 minute full- body low-impact workouts concentrate on areas where women tend to struggle the most: with the use of the  ballet  barre, you perform a series of small isometric movements that will lift your seat, and tone your thighs, abs and arms to build long and lean muscles. The vibe at the Kitsilano location is inviting but don’t be fooled by their kindness at reception, these workouts are a BURN! I also recommend you invest in a pair of sticky socks.

I work out 5-6 days a week, I bored and lose interest quickly so changing up my routine and trying new things workouts keeps me interested and challenged.  What’s your favorite workout or fitness studio and why?

On January 1st you probably set new fitness or weight loss resolutions for yourself! You were determined, inspired and ready to make 2017 different. Fast forward to January 17, the day where most people DITCH their New Year’s resolution… you’ve hit a wall and don’t know where all your “will power” has gone?!

Here are a few tips to help you stay the course and not give up on ditch day!

  • Allow for days off; eat a piece of cake, have a glass of wine and skip the workout.
  • You’re on a journey; physical results can take time, so appreciate the small victories like feeling energized after your workout.
  • Keep going; if you lose ½ lbs a week, by the end of 2017 you will have lost 26 lbs.
  • Don’t compare; comparing yourself to other on social media is a bad! Know where you’ve started, the progress you’ve made and wher you want to go!
  • Go outside; do fun fitness activities in nature like skiing in Whistler, snow shoeing on Grouse Mountain, trail running and hiking.
  • Try something new; ClassPass allows you to try many different types of fitness classes a low monthly cost.
  • Sign up for a race; set fitness goals rather than weight loss goals, start with a 5km race.
  • Remember; why you started!