Liz Wilson Yoga

You can take it easy and still get sweaty #BuildYourBestBody #FridayFive

By January 27, 2017 balanced lifestyle, Yoga
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So the rumors are true. There are in fact two waves to the virus that took me down during New Year’s. It hasn’t hit nearly as hard, but for going on five days now, I’ve been low energy, snotty, and super congested. Luckily the sore throat has been minimal this round too. I’ve actually been able to stay amidst society this time, whereas before I couldn’t get off the couch for over a week.

It’s been on the chilly side, so enjoying some rare sunshine with an easy run just isn’t possible yet. Yoga is hard as inverting is a no-go for my congestion. But my body is itching to move and sweat. Enter this week’s #BuildYourBestBody workout with Hedstrom Fitness!

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This is a perfect example of why training with the Surge and Kamagon Ball is so awesome. Training with fluid resistance gives you the freedom of adjusting weight (aka fluid level) with one piece of equipment. As I’m not feeling strong or coordinated this week, I took the weight way down. The movements were nearly enough of a challenge on their own, plus the added test of my balance with the shifting water made this workout quite difficult.

Side Lunge with Overhead Extension

Hold for 5-10 full yoga breaths each side.

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Shoulder Raises x 10

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Deadlifts x 10

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One Legged Hamstring Extension with Overhead Press x 10

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Bicycle Crunches

At least 10 rounds.

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This week’s workout is a bit of a doozy. We had to give ourselves quite a few takes to capture this one on video! Redoing take 1 may have been necessary due to cutting our legs out of the frame. But redoing take 2 was due to falling out of those one legged hamstring extensions!

You can still get 25% off the Surge and Kamagon Ball at hedstromfitness.com/sweatpink by using the code SPHF25!*

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We still have one more week of the #BuildYourBestBody Friday Five workouts to go! Tune in here and on YouTube next week to see what it is!

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We’re also finishing up 10 days of HIIT yoga next week. You can still join the challenge TODAY! (Hint, it’s push-ups.) Next Friday we’ll be putting all ten days’ moves together for what is sure to be one of the sweatiest Facebook Live sessions we’ve seen yet! Tune in on the Fit Approach Facebook page at 11am PT / 2pm ET to get sweaty with us!

*Offer valid through 2.28.17

Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Hedstrom Fitness. All opinions are my own. I truly appreciate all the brands that support the Sweat Pink community.

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Staying Motivated When You Just Don’t Wanna… #BuildYourBestBody #FridayFive

By January 20, 2017 balanced lifestyle
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Let’s be real here for a second. Sometimes you just don’t wanna do anything: to adult, to run, to go to the gym, to cook dinner, to try something new, to get off the couch.

This week has been one of those weeks (well, months if I’m being totally honest). Routine has gone completely out the window. The snow storm that we got in last week kept the city completely debilitated until yesterday. After those first few snowdays, I couldn’t ski in the city anymore. But the roads and sidewalks were still covered in a snowy / icy sludge, making running impossible. Not having routine to turn to has made it difficult to get motivated lately, especially considering moving and sweating is exactly what I need. So what’s a girl to do?

Cave under the influence

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Thank goodness I have friends that love to sweat. I get texts and messages all the time asking for sweat dates! Meeting up with friends to go to yoga class, run, ski, you name it!

Try something new, or not so new

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I’ve been really wanting to get into boxing, and finally got the sign that now is the perfect time to start. I’ve dabbled before (even as young as barely-able-to-walk), but I’m wanting to get after it on the regular now. As my wrists and shoulders are integral to my job (hello handstand addict), I wanted to make sure that I learn proper technique. Yesterday I had a private session with a badass boxer chick. She taught me footwork, how to hold my hands, and starting to throw punches. Gotta say, going through combinations on mitts was insanely satisfying.

Roll with the weather

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Sometimes you just gotta roll with it. Last Friday I tried to go up to Mt Hood to skin, but the roads prevented me from getting out of the city limits (how was the highway that bad for that long, and roads were completely shut down). I stopped at my local park on the way home and toured around for a couple of laps on the lone hill. A couple of days later I even went for a run before everything turned to straight ice. You guys, yak tracks are seriously amazing! There were some patches of ice that I could just run right over.

Keep rolling with the weather

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Yesterday I had an hour private session at the boxing gym and we had Sip ‘n Sweat at Flex & Flow last night. I also taught two yoga classes. That was my sweat game plan. However, the sun came out, the ice finished thawing out, and I had my running shoes with me. That only meant one thing: taking advantage of the 45 minutes I had after boxing before teaching and going for a run down by the river.

#BuildYourBestBody Workout

Today we’re getting sweaty with Hedstrom Fitness! It’s time for today’s #BuildYourBestBody Friday Five Workout!

Here’s a sneak peek:

Let’s break it down the five moves.

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Jump Squats

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Side Lunges

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Tricep Extensions

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Side Planks

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Russian Twists

Got the moves down? Go through each move 10 times TWICE!

Nicci and I also broke it down and led the workout LIVE on Fit Approach’s Facebook page this morning.

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You can still check it out here:

The Surge and Kamagon Ball can be filled with water to any level, challenging your balance dynamically with fluid resistance. Intrigued? You can get 25% off with the code SPHF25 at www.hedstromfitness.com/sweatpink.

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Discount: This post was sponsored by Hedstrom Fitness. All opinions are my own. I truly appreciate all of the brands that support the Sweat Pink community.

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Friday Five #BuildYourBestBody Workout

By January 13, 2017 balanced lifestyle, Yoga
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I’m always looking for new ways to get strong, break a sweat, and have fun. More and more I’m into nonconventional sweat tactics. I honestly couldn’t tell you the last time I went to the gym. I love my spin and weights circuit training, but curling 10-pound dumbbells just doesn’t interest me right now. There are so many ways to be active and get a little crazy with it. The last two days alone I got to cross country ski down the middle of the streets of Portland…

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Thank you snowpocalypse2017!

Sledski (new word? I like it!) down the hill at the park…

Sledding actually takes SO much core, especially when your sled is attached to a single ski!

Sledding actually takes SO much core, especially when your sled is attached to a single ski!

And get my yoga on with my loves, of course.

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I’ve always loved using water as resistance training. It probably has something to do with my dad putting me in the front of his canoe at 4 years old…

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I don’t get out onto the water as much as I used to. So when we got the new Surge and Kamagon Ball to try at Flex & Flow, I was stoked to get #HydroStrong!

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The Surge and Kamagon Ball are great pieces of training equipment that allows you to build strength dynamically using fluid resistance. You can fill the Surge and the Kamagon Ball with water at the level that works for your individual needs. (It can even be challenging with no water!) The fluid within sloshes around as you move, challenging your balance during your workout.

They also come in handy when in an ongoing foam roller battle with Nicci…

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For the next four weeks, we’re featuring a workout made up of 5 moves using the Surge and Kamagon Ball on Friday. Today is our first #BuildYourBestBody Friday Five Workout! Let’s break down the moves first:

Squat with Overhead Press

Extend the Surge overhead, and use your core to keep it up overhead as you squat. 10 reps,

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Reverse Lunge with Oblique Twist

From standing, step back with your right foot. Twist with the Surge over to the left. Bring it back to center. 5 reps on each side.

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Standing Rows

Fold forward with a flat back, and keep a microbend in the knees to protect the hamstrings. Extend the Surge toward the floor and draw it up towards the chest. Hug shoulderblades together as you lift the Surge and keep the low belly engaged the whole time. 10 reps.

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Bicep Curls

Basic. 10 reps.

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V-ups

Lie all the way down on your back with the Surge overhead. On an exhale lift up on the butt bones (not tail bone!) extending the Surge towards your toes. These are SO hard! 10 reps.

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Got it? Play around with them a little first, find variations that make them your own. Now let’s put it all together:

 

Maybe make your way through the routine 2 or 3 times. Definitely want to make sure you get your sweat on as we head into the weekend!

Have you used water resistance before? How much water are you using in your Surge or Kamagon Ball?

Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Hedstrom Fitness. All opinions are my own. I truly appreciate all of the brands that support the Sweat Pink community.

 

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2016 actually was pretty great…

By January 9, 2017 balanced lifestyle, Local Living, Musings, Travel, Yoga
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We’ve talked about 2017, why I’m excited, what I’m working toward, how I’m getting empowered for an awesome year!

Even though I talked about how weird / unusual / scary 2016 kind of was, there were some really great moments and some really amazing things that happened! Let’s revisit, shall we?

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I kicked off the New Year with my loves out in the snow! Such a perfect day!

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We opened Flex & Flow! This week we celebrated our one year anniversary of opening our studio. It’s hard to believe it was a year ago, but at the same time it’s hard to remember a time without this amazing place and our incredible tribe!

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Portland’s Snowpocalypse2016 resulted in a layer of ice that coated the entire city. It took Caitlin and I an hour and a half to walk 14 blocks to the bank to pay rent, and then we spent the rest of the day binge watching Making a Murderer and Breaking Bad!

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It’s hard for me to believe that I’ve only known Nicci for a little over a year now. She’s such an important part of my life. She and I work side by side on most things Flex & Flow and Sweat Pink. I see her, practice with her, drink coffee and / or wine with her, and confide to, laugh with, and hug her almost every day. Jamie, Nicci, and I are nearly inseparable! And I think this picture is the first yoga picture the three of us took together!

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We had a great ski date this day, including powder, snowball fights, and group singing and beers at the top!

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The Yoga Pearl holiday party was so much fun! I got lots of laughs and photobooth fun with girlfriends and had my first tarot card reading.

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My dad retired last year! In celebration, we took two daddy-daughter ski vacations together. The first was to Park City. We didn’t have the best snow (45 and sunny in February is not ideal ski conditions) but we had such a great time together! Until I had to drive through a blizzard to drop my dad at Alta and then take myself to the airport.

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Fall 2015 and winter 2016 was a little bit of a bust physically for me. I severely sprained my ankle in the fall, and then proceeded to displace a rib in January. Finally being able to get back to regular activity was amazing! This year I started run commuting a lot, which I absolutely loved!

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My dad and my second ski trip was to Colorado! It was great to have all the reunions in Breckenridge and return to Telluride! The snow wasn’t that great again, but knowing the terrain definitely came in handy and I was able to hike up high and get some amazing runs in! It was an amazing homecoming…

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I got to participate in some amazing photo shoots with some incredibly talented photographers this year! Including Stark Photography, Matt O Photo, Kate Daigneault, Christy Cassano-Meyer!

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Caitlin and I roadtripped to the Painted Hills, one of the wonders of Oregon! We stopped on the way to hike the Blue Basin ridge, made it to Jurassic Park (aka Painted Hills) in time for golden hour, and then stayed the night in Redmond, OR. We made sure to get a hike in the next morning before heading back to Portland.

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I had some amazing birthday celebrations this year! All the wine, pizza, and cake with friends for this girl! [Side note: Morty the Labradoodle also came into our lives this year! What a little muppet baby!]

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Shortly followed by another great night out for Caitlin’s birthday with this crew!

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The Portland Sweat Pink crew went to Seattle for the 5k kick off of the United Relay!

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Even amidst all the craziness, I still managed to squeeze in some hikes as the weather started to get better in the spring and into the summer.

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A girl’s trip to wine country for Harris’s birthday perfectly lined up with an unusually warm spring weekend.

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I went from coast to coast on Memorial Weekend. Caitlin and I spent the holiday weekend up on Bainbridge Island, and then I immediately flew to meet my parents at our beach on the North Carolina coast for a week.

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I did Acro Yoga for the first time this year! I’d played with it a little bit before, yes, including the “airplane” with my aunt when I was little. But hosting our Acro workshops at Flex & Flow this year was the first time I actually took a class and played around with it.

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Jamie, Nicci, and I led breathing and meditation for repellers during The Skyline Challenge in downtown Portland.

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Caitlin and I hiked Munra Point this summer!

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I was so honored to be asked to teach at International Yoga Day Portland, leading about 100 yogis through a flow in the Pioneer Courthouse Square in downtown Portland. First time I’ve ever taught hooked up to a mic!

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We loved having a booth Mississippi Street Fair! Yes, we were the ones doing squats with a t-rex.

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BlogFest was in LA again this year. The unicorn squad (aka #sweatpink team) rocked out a week of sweating, blogging, gramming, and booth-babing FTW!

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Just a few days later, Jamie, Nicci, and I headed to Indianapolis for Fitbloggin. I had no idea what to expect about this little city, but I gotta say, I was really pleasantly surprised! We ate really well (even back when Nic was still vegan), and got plenty of East-Coast-level-sweaty runs in exploring the river, arts district, and Mass Ave. It was great seeing some SPAs at the conference, too, and rocking out some Zumba, as always!

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My parents came to visit in August. We hung in Portland some, but I made sure to also take them to Bend this time. And we got to SUP in Hood River, too (yes, all the SUP-ing all the time with my parents).

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Alyse came to visit! We did all the yoga (she hadn’t been to town since we were building out the studio), and ate all the things! Oh, and we discovered McConnell’s ice cream together. Thanks, Nic and Jamie!

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Jamie left us for 6 weeks in the fall to go to Bali and complete her 500-hour teacher training. I have nothing more to say. Kidding… We missed her terribly!

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The Portland lululemon put on Tales of the Taper, an event featuring prominent figures in our community and how they learned to calm the eff down. It was great to hear that slowing down doesn’t mean you can’t be a badass.

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We discovered the photo booth at Victoria Bar!

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Between all the work, travel, trailrunning, and yoga, we made sure to include time for summer adventures! [Clockwise starting top left: Rooster Rock, Angel’s Rest, Forest Park, supping the Columbia, Cannon Beach, Arcadia Beach, Mt Hood, Harry’s Ridge at St Helen’s. ]

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I took Caitlin home to Asheville! I loved getting to show her my hometown: hiking up on the parkway, lunch with one of my best friends from college, dinner at Curate, yoga at Asheville Yoga Center, a show at the Grey Eagle…

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And then the holidays happened to us. We had so many things going on for the holidays with work, and planning for a lot to kick off in January, so this time seemed to just fly by!

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We had an amazing Friends-giving celebration all weekend long, including the first annual Flex & Flow Turkey Trot!

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I got to spend a week with my main man! Oh boy all the snuggle parties…

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I’ve only gotten two days in the white fluffy stuff, so far in winter 16-17. But I’ve had plenty of chances to brush up on my ice skating skills in town… We had two more Snowpocolypse2016 episodes before the year ended that totally shut down the city.

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A big-time highlight this year was getting to go home for Christmas! This Christmas was so special for so many reasons:

  • It was my first Christmas in North Carolina.
  • It was my first Christmas at the beach (I’m always in the snow!).
  • It was our first Christmas with just the three of us. (Four! Nobody tell Tori I didn’t include her in the initial family count.)
  • My parents had no idea I was coming home! SURPRISE!

Unfortunately I got sick the day after I got home. Weeks of not sleeping or eating properly, incredible stress, and travel caught up to me in the worst way. It started with a sore throat and fever for three days, then moved to congestion, then to a cough in my chest and a fever, then a chronic cough, then I lost my voice. I think, after 10 days, I’m finally on the up and up. But needless to say, I did not get to ring in the New Year in style and celebration. It was rung in with snot, tea, and sweats, but I did have my bestie by my side watching movies with me all weekend!

Looking at the highlight reel makes me grateful for a wonderful year. It helps me remember the positive moments, the laughs and adventures, not the stress and uncertainty and pain. So I’m choosing to move into this week, into this new year with all those wonderful moments filling me up with light and love.

 

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#IAmEmpowered for 2017

By December 31, 2016 balanced lifestyle, Musings
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This time of year is one of my favorites! Yes, I absolutely love the holidays. The twinkle lights, the fluffy snow, the smell of pine, crisply-wrapped packages with shiny bows, a great excuse to have champagne way more than normal…

I also love the idea of an upcoming fresh start. [I’m going to avoid using the “r” word, so instead I’ll use goals/habits/etc.] There’s an electricity in the air around the new year at the thought of kicking bad habits and starting new good habits.

LET’S GET ORGANIZED!

The theme of 2017 for our team is organization! For years I’ve used the same Moleskine planner: each week on the left, with a blank lined sheet on the right. For years, we’ve given calendars and planners as gift in my family. My aunt always makes a contribution to a Golden Retriever rescue foundation in my dad’s name, and we put the gifted calendar up in our kitchen. My mom and I always get my dad a Golden Retriever puppy weekly planner. I even got Alyse and Jamie these Moleskine planners last year. I love the sleek lines of it; it’s able to fit in my purse! I love being able to see my week on the left while having my to-do list and notes on the right.

However, the level of busy-ness this year resulted in my planner looking like this:

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Chaos.

I need something different now. I got the larger version of this, intending to write in the hours myself on each day. (I think having each day’s hours laid out will really help with my crazy schedule!) However, I’m also really curious about The Volt Planner.

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I’ve also been seeing a lot about Bulletjournaling lately, which just involves a plain ole notebook. This system still absolutely confuses me, but it seems like once you have it down that it’s life changing! A notebook can always be put to use, with Bulletjournaling or something else.

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I’ve also used Erin Condren’s LifePlanner before, and am contemplating it again. The level of customization is awesome! You can add your name, cover photos, and choose among beautiful outside designs and interior layouts. There are also tons of fun accessories you can add to it.

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What planner / journaling system do you use? Have you tried Bulletjournaling or the Volt planner?

WE ARE STRONG! WE ARE POWERFUL! 

I feel like the year 2016 has been universally a very unusual year for everyone. Any of my astrologically-aware friends have any theories about that? It’s unfortunately ending on a fearful note, for many reasons. In moments of fear and uncertainty, we can feel out of control. Not being in control is something very difficult for me. I remind myself of something my dad said to me post-panic attack many years ago: “Lizzy, you don’t have to control everything, you just have to know that you can handle it.”

I find in moments of fear and panic that it’s good to remember these words, and that we are strong, resilient, and powerful. There are many ways to do this that I know I’m going to be turning to through the end of the year and into 2017…

Building Strength

Feeling physically strong always helps me feel mentally and emotionally strong, as well. I’m so excited about all the toys (aka torture devices) that we have at Flex & Flow right now to play with (aka get my butt kicked).

The MostFit Core Hammer  is a safer alternative to a traditional sledgehammer, and a lot easier to wield and transport than a huge tire. It also makes me feel like I’m training for some fierce gladiator games or as a stand in for Game of Thrones! Get 10% off with the code MFSW10 at checkout!

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As you might have read recently, we love getting our balancing on! The new BYO BOSUs have rocked our world even as they make our muscles quiver. Get free shipping with the code BYOBFREESHIP!

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Not only are exciting things happening in the future of HIIT Yoga, I’m super excited to be regularly teaching a hiit yoga class now! I’ve always used gliders/towels/blankets for core work, but to use them for 75% of the class? Holy moly, a burn like no other!

#IAmEmpowered

We are so excited to announce that the year 2017 for Sweat Pink is all about EMPOWERMENT! We’ve themed the entire year! All of our challenges, prompts, blog posts, and more are going to be about getting strong, being inspired, building each other up, and reveling in our own power!

We’re getting empowered in January in two awesome ways! First off is our month-long Instagram challenge! Every day of January we’re featuring a prompt on @FitApproach that (hopefully) inspires you to post your own photo and write blog posts and share your story! Check out the awesome line up for the month:

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  • January 1 – 8 : Sweat Pink community kick off
  • January 9 – 13: #EBGoals2017 with Eggland’s Best
  • January 16 – 20: #BuildYourBestBody with Hedstrom Fitness
  • January 21 – 31: 10 days of HIIT Yoga with Flex & Flow

Another way to get empowered for 2017? 30 days of yoga! At Flex & Flow, we’re hosting a 30-day challenge, awesome stickers included!We are so excited to be partnering with lucy Activewear as a sponsor of the #IAmEmpowered challenge. Winners of the challenge will receive gift cards to shop at lucy!

Not in the Portland area? Maybe host your very own 30 day yoga challenge! Hashtag away to join in on all the fun!

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Ok, to finish it out, let’s talk specific goals for 2017!

  • #questforthepress – I have no idea if a press will happen for me in 2017. But I’m going to be working hard for it!
  • Run a half marathon race.
  • Get outside of the country! Two trips are in the works!
  • Self-care: 1 rest day per week; 1 massage every 1-2 months

I’m ready to slay. Are you in?

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BOSU Balancing Babes #BYOBOSU

By December 19, 2016 balanced lifestyle, Yoga
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Have you been seeing those bright domes and the torture (aka kickbutt workout) they inflict upon us? Those are BOSU Balance Trainers! You’ve probably seen the classic blue and black ones in gyms for a while now. Not only did BOSU release a pink edition last year that we went crazy for…

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But NOW they’ve released a Build Your Own BOSU line where you can customize the bladder and rim color combination! With 6 bladder colors and 5 rim colors to choose from, the world is your colorful oyster! (Pink bladder and green rim is our favorite!)

Other than being a great pop of color to you workout, how do BOSUs intensify your workout? They ignite all sorts of stabilizing muscles that maybe get neglected during normal strength training. And the beauty is that you can take this equipment into pretty much any workout!

Shuttle Sprints

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Handstands

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Planking

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Plank Stacking

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Lunging

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Crow, Tree, and Downdog’ing

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Because we love all the fun we’ve been having with our BYO BOSUs so much, and are obsessed with the new color combos you can create, we’re giving one away! Head over to fitapproach.com to enter the GIVEAWAY** right NOW!

*TODAY ONLY (starting on 12/18 at midnight and ending at 7 pm on 12/19)

**Giveaway valid for US residents ONLY.

Can’t wait for a BYO BOSU? I don’t blame you. Use the code BYOBFREESHIP through 12/31/2016 to get FREE shipping on all BYO BOSU products!

Also stay tuned for some awesome BOSU news coming at ya on @fitapproach in the coming days…

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by BOSU. All opinions are my own. I truly appreciate all of the brands that support the Sweat Pink community! 

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Tis the season, let’s shop! #FixObsession

By December 10, 2016 balanced lifestyle
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It’s that time of year: snow. Cozy sweaters and all the boots. Hot toddies, I mean cider. Twinkle lights. And presents!

I love presents. [insert only child joke here] But all jokes aside, I love finding something for my friends and family that fits them perfectly. Something that reminds me of them when I see it, or reminds me of something we did together. Something that makes them light up the minute they open it and see what’s inside the wrapping.

Finding that something special can be quite difficult. I’ve gotten into the habit of picking those things up throughout the year, rather than waiting for birthdays or Christmas. It’s a nice “surprise and delight.” I also love experiences as gifts. For the last 6 years, my present from my parents has been our family ski trip we take every spring. My close friends and I will usually do a big, fancy dinner together, or even a weekend away. Many of my friends have gone this route with their loved ones as well. But there’s a certain pleasure in giving presents this time of year. Maybe it’s ingrained in me after years of traditional Christmases growing up, but I still love it. Let’s talk gift ideas…

RUNNERS

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Headlamp, AfterShokz, neon jacket… Yup, it was a cold, dark, rainy early morning run for me!

For years, my dad has been on my case about wearing too much black when I’m outside. His commitment to safety in the form of being decked out in orange has rubbed off. My neon orange running jacket has been one of the best purchases I’ve ever made! I got this amazing running jacket in black last year from lulu, and was only wearing it around town. The other color available was a borderline-obnoxious neon orange that I was doubtful of. But my father’s voice in the back of my head made me do it, and I’m so glad I listened to him! It’s the perfect way to feel safe when out running on cold, dark, rainy days, which we have plenty of in Portland.

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Patagonia currently has a great running shell available! The Houdini Jacket is super lightweight, and is wind and water resistant. Perfect for heading out into the elements! And it comes in a bright cherry red.

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Also big on my runner’s safety kick right now is reflectivity! I know lululemon has made a huge effort to include it in pretty much all of their latest line, including these entirely reflective run pants!

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Some of my favorite lulu items to run in with more subtle reflectivity touches are:

Lights are a great way to go to stay safe, and make for great stocking stuffers! I use a Black Diamond headlamp when running (or skiing) in the dark and camping. 

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This light up armband from Runtastic would make for a great stocking stuffer, as would their lights that are to go around the back of the heel.

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Probably my favorite running accessory is my AfterShokz wireless headphones. These would make a fabulous gift for the runners in your life! They’re bluetooth (read more about how wireless was a huge game changer here, especially for #stopdropandyoga sessions!), sweatproof, and use bone conduction technology. Meaning they rest outside of your ear canal, allowing you to jam out while hearing your surroundings.  

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Let’s keep talking accessories… I know this one is definitely on my list: a great running watch! These fitness trackers from Runtastic look awesome! I’ve also heard great things about Garmin from friends, like Courtney. (What’s your vote on this, sweaties?)

Another running game changer for me that I discovered in Colorado is my Nathan handheld running water bottle. A lot of people in Portland seem surprised when they see me with it, wondering its purpose, and they love it when I tell them what it is! I use this insulated and reflective one from Nathan. The new pocket is big enough to fit an iPhone 6 or 7, too. Then you not only stay hydrated throughout your run, but then always have something to prop your phone up against for pictures!

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Whether you train to run, or are just a workoutaholic, these pieces of workout equipment should be added to your fitness junkie friends’ home gyms immediately!

The MostFit Core Hammer – This sledgehammer is a lot safer than it’s heavy metal counterpart, and is a lot easier to heft and transport than a huge tire. Or would make for the perfect gift for your Game of Thrones fan friends!  hehe Get 10% off with the code MFSW10 at checkout!

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ActivMotion Bar – This bar is actually hallow and filled with weighted ball bearings. Your core has to turn on like woah! to balance the shifting weights. Donate to support their IndieGogo campaign for an at-home training program, and receive an ActivMotion Bar! It’ll be a pretty nice discount from retail price.

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BYO BOSU – One of our favorite pieces of workout equipment, BOSU, has just launched their new BYO line! So now you can mix and match bladder and rim colors! Can you say “pink and green?!” Get free shipping with the code BYOBFREESHIP! 

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ORGANIZED SOULS

For years, we’ve given calendars and planners as gift in my family. My aunt always makes a contribution to a Golden Retriever rescue foundation in my dad’s name, and we put the gifted calendar up in our kitchen. My mom and I always get my dad a Golden Retriever puppy weekly planner. I even got Alyse and Jamie these Moleskine planners (the ones I’ve used for years) last year. I love the sleek lines of it; it’s able to fit in my purse! I love being able to see my week on the left while having my to-do list and notes on the right.

I’m exploring some other cool options, too! I’m really curious about The Volt Planner.

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I’ve also been seeing a lot about Bulletjournaling lately, which just involves a plain ole notebook. This system still absolutely confuses me, but it seems like once you have it down that it’s life changing! A notebook can always be put to use, with Bulletjournaling or something else, and make for great gifts.

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I’ve also used Erin Condren’s LifePlanner before. The level of customization is awesome! You can add a name, cover photos, and choose among beautiful outside designs and interior layouts. There are also tons of fun accessories that can be added.

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The biggest thing about giving a planner is knowing the recipient. Choosing what you know will be used and appreciated. Calendars and notebooks are a little safer as they can always be used. I think one of my favorite gifts I ever gave my parents was a simple monthly calendar I had made at Wal-Mart with family pictures for each month. Cheap, easy, but so thoughtful (if I do say so myself), and they loved it!

FASHIONISTAS

If you’re anything like me, it’s a rarity to get out of your yoga pants! I don’t dress up all that often right now. And when I do, I have my few favorite outfits I turn to. (Hello, velvet black dress.)

When the holidays come around and you’re dressing up more often, or at least I am, I have to fight to be creative with my style. Thanks to the overabundance of pictures I always take, I don’t want to be reminded by Facebook in the coming years that I wore the same red DVF top to all holiday events. (Yes, I wore it to Christmas two years ago and Thanksgiving this year, thank you very much.)

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Even if the person in question has great style (that may or may not include spandex), it can be so hard to pin it down in order to get a gift. And a gift certificate to a store can feel so impersonal. Enter Stitch Fix! It’s like gifting a friend (or yourself!) with a personal stylist. It’s three easy steps to a more stylish closet:

  1. Fill out a form with your size, style, and price preferences.
  2. Stitch Fix will send 5 hand-selected items just for you, and deliver them directly to your door. No holiday shopping mania for you!
  3. You buy what you like and return the rest.

It’s just that easy! It’s up to you to give a friend a gift certificate or even a yearly subscription, and give the gift of style!

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ZEN

For such a crazy time of year, it’s a great idea to help loved ones chill out! A bottle of wine, a massage (thank you, Jamie!), a spa date, fuzzy socks

Coffee scrub from Frank Body makes for a great stocking stuffer! I personally love the coffee coconut flavor, though it’s a challenge to not spread it over toast or ice cream. It’s a great way to wake up and soothe skin during this time of year with too much eating and drinking, cold and windy weather, and indoor heating systems.

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For more ideas, check these gift guides out!:

What gifts are you so excited to be giving? What’s on your Christmas list this year?

Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Stitch Fix. All opinions are my own. I truly appreciate all of the brands that support the Sweat Pink community.

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#Handstand365 Take 2

By December 7, 2016 Travel, Yoga
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I thought I had another couple of days until my second round of #handstand365 completed. While reliving the time around my move from Colorado (thank you, Facebook memories), I came to realize that I started #handstand365 December 1, 2014. Meaning my 2 year anniversary of this daily challenge was last Thursday.

This past year I decided not to necessarily post a handstand picture every day. How many times can you post a handstand splits in front of the studio mural or a brick wall? Though I was still committed to practicing handstand every day, I committed myself to posting only on the days where I felt moved to. My oh my, what a year it’s been. And handstand has been there every step of the way. It wasn’t always pretty, it didn’t always feel good, but I took it with me everywhere I went…

Mt Hood

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Colorado

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The Painted Hills, OR

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Seattle, WA

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Columbia River Gorge

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Bainbridge Island, WA

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Wrightsville Beach, NC

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Asheville, NC

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Los Angeles, CA

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Indianapolis, IN

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Bend, OR

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Oregon / Washington Coast

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I took my handstand in front of the lens…

… through injuries …

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… through opening a studio

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… through tough transitions and variations …

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… and, of course, all over Portland!

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Sometimes I still can’t believe this pose. Something I once thought so impossible, and now it’s a daily practice for me. Something I can hold while talking (or getting kissed by puppies), feel comfortable in busting almost everywhere (still no china shop for this bull, though), and play with countless variations.

Though I am so happy with the progress I’ve made, I can’t wait to see where I take handstand (or where it takes me) in the coming year…

  • I’m headed to Banff in February. I’m so excited to play in this gorgeous place!
  • I’m still #questforthepress-ing so hard! Puppy press and negative press are feeling more and more solid every day. I’m told straddle press is in my very near future, but I still feel like there’s no way I’ll be able to lift, nay, float my feet off the ground!
  • Caitlin and I are planning a European extravaganza next year! I can’t wait to see the European expressions to my public displays of yoga.

  • BlogFest is happening in Vegas this year! Yoga on the strip, anyone? I’m determined to bust a pose with one of the Trojans! A yoga pose this time, though…

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  • I’m still working to deepen my scorpion. I feel like I’ve lost some ground there, but I’ve also had to take a little step back from backbending in the last weeks. Looking forward to putting my back into it!

The list could go on and on… There are always amazing sunsets, scenic adventures, inverting friends, new variations. That’s the beauty of this practice. Yes, I love the thrill of balancing on my hands. But I love all the places I’ve been with it, and am excited about all the places yet to go!

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Healthing Up the Holidays #HealthUpYourHolidays

By November 30, 2016 balanced lifestyle
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Today’s the last day for #HealthUpYourHolidays with Designer Protein and Fit Approach. For all of November we’ve been getting ready to be happy and healthy for this holiday season.

Let’s recap with my favorite prompts from the past month:

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What I’m most excited about for the holiday season: Winter Wonderland! And of course skiing (backcountry in particular) is my favorite winter sport!

We talked about ab-burning core moves! I’ve been working negative presses in my handstand, with the goal of getting that damn press up! So any and all core work for me is a necessary evil right now. Navasana boat pose is a sure fire way to get everything burning. Insane boat pose sequences have been a theme for our teachers lately, so thanks to Jamie, Nicci, Daniel, and Jessie for the “love.”

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I loved giving out shoutouts to my healthy living inspirations! During the #HealthUpYourHolidays we got to concoct healthy(ish) cocktails for our Facebook Live event on Fit Approach’s Facebook page. Cheers to replacing chocolate syrup with Sunshine Chocolate Designer Protein. (More on these recipes below!)

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And how could I not be inspired by this awesome crew at Flex & Flow! The vibes at the studio have been insane-amazing lately!

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My favorite way to stay active while traveling? Yoga and dance parties in the airport!

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On Thanksgiving Day, our first Turkey Trot was a huge success! We got wet, sweaty, and all kinds of muddy up on Wildwood in Forest Park! Trail running was followed by yoga, followed by lots of wine and friends.

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Getting motivated after the holidays is always challenging. A GSD work session with Jamie and Nicci all day at a coffee shop, a great park run and bootcamp workout with Jamie and Abbie, and two hours of yoga classes got me back on track immediately!


Today we’re talking about how to stay healthy for the rest of December. This word “healthy” has dual meanings for me:

  1. Staying active and keeping a balanced diet.
  2. Self care!

Things have been unprecedentedly crazy over the last weeks. Working 15 hour days, working 7 days a week, teaching 15 days in a row, running all over the city (literally, I got in great milage in October and November)… Thanks to the range of amazing food offerings all over Portland, maintaining a balanced diet hasn’t been that difficult, even on the go (special shout out to Bamboo for all the sushi, poke, and miso to-go orders). Staying active hasn’t been a problem either, obviously. I’m so lucky that being active is part of my job. But I haven’t been switching it up as much as I should. I haven’t made it to the gym for circuit training or laps. I haven’t been to my favorite spin studio in months. My skis aren’t even tuned for the season yet, and I hear the snow is falling hard up in the mountains.

Goals for December:

  • attend two spin classes
  • go to the gym at least once a week for circuits, weights, or laps
  • get my skis tuned and get up to the mountains!

Now it sounds like I’m just adding activities on to an already maxed out schedule. So also part of my goals is to make sure I’m taking care of myself. The last two weeks I’ve felt so much tension covering my shoulders, neck, and upper back. I’ve started feeling my old rib injury flare up again. I’ve had headaches. I haven’t been sleeping nearly enough. Self care is an integral part to staying healthy, and happy!

Self care goals for December:

  • get 7-8 hours of sleep 5 times a week
  • attend at least one vinyasa / active restoration / yin yoga class a week
  • take one rest day a week – that means one day entirely off from activity
  • hydrate! – I’ve been drinking way too much coffee, and not nearly enough water. (Special thanks to Prasad for keeping me healthy and hydrated with their hot wellness toddies!)
  • get a massage

Finding balance between all of these goals isn’t going to even be close to easy. But I’m super excited to put them down “on paper,” to commit myself to them, and stay healthy this holiday season!


Part of why I love the holidays is being able to #treatyoself!

I have a huge sweet tooth, and the holidays enable me to taste all the delicious things! However, I do try to keep it healthy when it’s possible. That’s why I’m loving these delicious “smoothie” recipes including Designer Protein (the chocolate flavors, because, duh)! I get to satiate my sweet tooth while getting a protein boost at the same time!

Alyse’s Chocolate Almond Toffee Smoothie

  • 1 scoop Designer Protein Gourmet Chocolate Whey
  • 1/2 cup yogurt, or 1/2 banana (I’m not a banana person, but that will also give this a creamy texture)
  • 1 spoonful of almond butter
  • Optional: dash of cold brew coffee
  • 1 cup liquid (milk of any kind, water, whatever floats your boat)
  • Handful of ice
  • Top with: whipped cream, toffee crumbles

Fit Approach team’s Protein Mudslide Shake

Directions: First, make the Irish cream substitute. Mix all ingredients in a high-powered blender, pour into your most festive wine glass, and enjoy!

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Designer Protein has some awesome promotions going on right now! So load up, and do some good while you’re at it!

  • Designer Protein is offering 30% off everything at DesignerProtein.com with the code SWEATPINK30
  • Check out their Facebook page for 12 days of giving, going on through 12/6/16. Each day, they have a special promotion, and 12% of proceeds will go to the San Diego Food Bank to help feed the homeless throughout the holidays.

How are you keeping it happy and healthy throughout the holidays??

 

Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Designer Protein. All opinions expressed are my own. I truly appreciate all of the brands that support the Sweat Pink community!

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Paving the Way for Girl Power! #paveparagirl

By November 16, 2016 balanced lifestyle
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Girl power is at an all-time high in my world right now!

  • Jamie is back from Bali, where she continued to kick butt, and had completely dived back into her world here with incredible energy! Jet lag, say what now? Our GSD sessions in the last 10 days (AND our hugs!) have been FIRE!
  • Alyse continues to balance motherhood and lady bossing in ways that always amaze me!
  • Becky‘s level of organization is awe-worthy. She rocks out all of the amazing things we have going at Sweat Pink headquarters while preparing for her first round of exams in law school.
  • Nicci and I work side-by-side on most things. She helps keep my sanity and my creativity intact. While Jamie was gone last month, we rocked out running the studio, worked multiple campaigns, and were surrogate dog moms to Abbie the Vizsla! (I can officially say it now that she’s back and I won’t jinx it! Everyone survived and nothing burned down!)
  • Caitlin always amazes me! The best partner-in-crime a girl could ask for: Andy Warhol exhibits, delicious dinners, hiking and yoga, researching candidates on our ballots… Oh, and she cures cancer for a living!
  • Without getting political, I’ve loved the energy this past week of women coming together, comforting each other, and recognizing their power! Fellow teachers, students, friends, coworkers, baristas… We are woman, hear us roar!

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Even beyond the women in my immediate circle, it’s all about girl power and supporting those who build women up!

Jamie brought back bracelets for us and the studio from Cambodia, where she met Rany Som, the owner of the local jewelry company, Graines de Cambodge. These bracelets are hand-crafted with local and sustainable seeds by women, and in support of women.

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I’m also so excited to be working with Pavepara, a clothing company by women and for women!

“My objective is to fulfill a growing need for women like me to have clothing that moves from yoga to, the trail, to relaxation — effortlessly.”

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Chance, the owner of the company created the name from Joni Mitchell’s “Big Yellow Taxi,” about our society “paving paradise.” She wants to reverse all of this negative energy while creating community gardens in parking lots and clothing women in pieces that are “dedicated to purpose.”

I love wearing clothes that enable me to maintain an active lifestyle, that let me #stopdropandyoga at a moment’s notice, go for a quick run when I have 30 minutes between appointments, roll around in the park with puppies… And Pavepara‘s clothes and mission help me do that!

Canyon Wren Drape-Neck Tank

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I always love a drapey tank! It’s a style that’s great to practice in and then head to happy hour. AND, it’s long enough to wear over leggings.

Talons Leg Warmers

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I LOVE that leg warmers are back in style. Maybe it’s just that I’m a yoga teacher and am always in leggings and boots. Or maybe it’s that I used to live in a ski town and was layered up to the gills all the time. But whatever the reason is, I’m running with it! These leg warmers with the stirrup foot are perfect for layering under boots and then hit the mat straightaway. The upper cuff helps keep it in place, plus adds a great color blocking detail.

Aula Arm Warmers

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Pavepara also included some wing warmers in my package! For someone who sweats as much as I do, they’re perfect for staying warm while starting out on the mat, and easy to strip off as I warm up. I’m also excited to take them hiking! When on my NOLS backpacking course in college, our instructors really had to fight to get us to de-layer before starting out hiking. As chilly as the mornings were, they knew we’d warm up within the first half hour and would need to stop to take fleeces off. (They were always right. We always warmed up and started sweating in no time!) These arm warmers will be perfect to stay warm and easy to strip off without having to stop hiking!

Shop the Pavepara line at pavepara.com and receive 30% off with the code SWEATPINKLOVE!

Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by Pavepara. All opinions are my own. I truly appreciate all of the brands that support the Sweat Pink community!

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