Liz Wilson Yoga

Ready to sprung for spring? #spring4prana

By March 3, 2017 balanced lifestyle, Travel

Spring has not quite sprung, yet. And I’m ok with it!

I grew up in a place with four very distinct seasons, and I loved it. But after years in Colorado with bonus months of winter in lieu of a traditional spring season, aka spring skiing, I’m not quite ready for spring. In Breckenridge, March is traditionally the month we would get the most snow! And we would basically be in continued winter through May or even June.

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April 11, 2014 on Mt Baldy, CO

In my mind, I’m still in the height of ski season. I’m not ready to pack up my coats, fleeces, and boots.

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March 1, 2017 on Mt Hood, OR

However I am starting to think about getting on board with being excited about spring. Sunshine, flowers, sundresses… Some pretty awesome things are coming up, too, which always helps with the excitement level!

We leave NEXT WEEK for Sonoma! I was reminding my mom I would be in California next week, and her response was, “Oh, right, it’s March!” My sentiments exactly. But I’m SO excited to get my yoga, trail running, and wine on in Sonoma!

This program is brought to you by our amazing sponsors: prAna, Handful, Sweat Cosmetics, Goddess Garden, Momentum Jewelry, Designer Protein, frank body, Amazing Grass

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I also get to go home to North Carolina the weekend after the retreat. Woo hoo for some much-needed family time at the beach!


prAna could not have timed the drop of their spring line at a better time! A lot of long travel days are in my future. I am NOT one of those girls that wears dresses to travel, or even jeans. I do try to look put-together for the most part (I’m not in pj’s or anything), but comfort is key. I always shift around while I’m sitting, stretch it out, #stopdropandyoga whenever I can. So lightweight pants or yoga leggings are the best travel wear for me.

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I’m getting to try out prAna’s Annexi Pant, and they totally fit the bill! They are super lightweight, work casually or sportily, and comfortable! They are mostly made out of hemp and recycled polyester, with a touch of spandex. (Do they even make pants without spandex anymore?!) Hemp is ridiculously eco-friendly; it’s safer for farmers growing it and doesn’t require chemicals or pesticides. It also ensures that the product is lightweight, breathable, and wrinkle-free! They make me crave for some warmer weather as it turned into a pretty cold day here in Portland today. I can’t wait to rock them with my Birks!

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This is how you’ll find me at the airport…

Both locations for my upcoming trips are going to have variable weather. Sonoma and North Carolina in March most likely will have warm days and chilly nights. Not to mention all the sweating that will be happening… So layers are what it’s all about! I’m loving prAna’s Liana Sweater! Made of organic cotton and hemp, it’s super lightweight but surprisingly warm! And the off-white color goes with everything! Perfect for over sweaty clothes post-class or with jeans for a night out. It makes for a great, versatile layer, key for travel.

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Jamie is in the Breezie Tank from prAna

As my friend Jamie talks about, there comes a time where fashion has to meet function. Or hopefully it does. Thank goodness for the existence of athleisure and cute and comfy clothes! Clothes that fit my lifestyle and my body type. Clothes that can be worn in so many different ways for so many different occasions.

It’s not that you won’t catch us in heels. I love heels! I was even thinking about wearing heels on my date last night. But you won’t ever see me traveling in heels. Or touring around a city. Or walking to work (though going dancing might equate to the commute).

It’s not that you won’t catch me in jeans, though it’s rare. Number 1, they have to have stretch to them. These are probably the hardest thing for me to find for my body type, so stretch is a must! But a good pair of skinny jeans can be one of the most versatile things in my closet. I can throw on with Birks, cuff with booties, or tuck into knee-high boots. prAna’s London Jean fit the bill perfectly! Luckily, they help me keep my well-planned date outfit in place even if I decided to make the transfer from heels to boots due to the cold evening…

Maybe some new threads from prAna’s spring line will help you get in the mood for spring, too! Use the code S4P17LWY at checkout to get 15% off!

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

 

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Live the life you LOVE…

By February 15, 2017 Local Living, Musings

Webster’s Dictionary defines “love” …

Let’s just skip the cheesy crap, shall we. It’s Valentine’s, cheesy crap is expected.

Have I been delivered red roses by my boyfriend on Valentine’s Day? Yes.

Have I been given diamonds by my boyfriend? Yes.

Have I been proposed to at a romantic restaurant on Valentine’s Day? Well, not exactly. I did witness plenty romantic proposals while working at a fine dining restaurant in a historic Victorian house in a ski town, though.

Got enough romantic cheese factor?

I’m actually a huge romantic. I love rom-coms, I’m constantly reading romance novels, Wuthering Heights and Pride and Prejudice are two of my favorite books…

But there are so many kinds of love other than romantic love! I love Valentine’s Day, but I love love more. Let’s celebrate ALL the love!

Happy Galentine’s Day!

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I’m so lucky to be surrounded by such amazing girlfriends! Girls that I can sweat, adventure, talk, laugh, drink coffee and wine, and all around love life with! My mountain girls in Colorado, my yoga chicks, my Flex & Flow tribe, badass women are all around me…

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For the first year Caitlin and I were friends, my parents kept inquiring about our relationship. Most people suspected (or maybe still do) that Caitlin and I are together. Last time I was home and I was chatting with my parents about recents dates, my mom expressed gratitude for what I have with Caitlin. I don’t have to settle for a guy with whom I’m anything less than completely infatuated because I have a partner! I have someone I can do anything with. We adventure and veg, we laugh and cry, we talk about everything (literally we don’t even need music on roadtrips). Everything we do is amazing and fun because we do it together!

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I’m so lucky to have these two babes by my side pretty much every day! We work together, do all the yogas all the damn time, drink all the coffee and wine, eat all the fries and cheese. I laugh so hard with them, I count it as an ab workout. They challenge me to work harder, think creatively, push my edges, run faster, sweat even more… They’re always up for anything and everything! We really are the Three Musketeers.

Family Love

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I truly have the best family ever! We’re a small family, and so close. I’m so lucky to be close with my dad, my mom, and then the three of us together. Skiing, beach sitting, drinking wine, watching Bones, adventuring through Italy, we have the best time together no matter what we’re doing!

Mother Nature

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My love of the mountains AND the beach is oh-so-obvious. Those seem so opposite but the mountains and the beach equally hold special places in my heart. From hauling my butt up a mountain in the snow on my skis to busting a handstand in the sand with the salt air filling my lungs, being outside makes me so happy!

Self Care

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Massages are literally one of my favorite things. I’m rarely as relaxed as I am when I’m getting a massage. [It may look more like Caitlin is torturing me, but it’s actually a Thai massage move!]

Sweat

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Running, yoga, handstands, hiking, skiing, spinning… I LOVE to sweat! It’s a rare day to not sweat at some point. Plus I tend to run pretty warm, so I sweat pretty easily anyways. 😉

Puppies

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I absolutely gush over the pups! I don’t have one myself yet, but I’m lucky enough some of my closest friends have dogs that I get to love on regularly!

Coffee, wine, chocolate

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Yup, this deserves it’s own category! I pretty much don’t go a day without having my three favorite things! I truly buy into the French mentality of having everything but having it in moderation. I love going out to eat, enjoying a nice glass of wine, splitting dessert with a friend, nursing a foamy latte in a coffeeshop…


There are so many things for which to feel love and gratitude. Friends, family, dogs, travel, nature, wine…

We’re still talking about LOVE all week long over at Sweat Pink, too! Head over to Instagram to see what the daily prompt is!


 

My life is filled with love, on Valentine’s Day and beyond… What are you in love with today?

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Getting happy and getting sweaty! #BuildYourBestBody #FridayFive

By February 3, 2017 balanced lifestyle, Yoga

Not too long ago, we were pretty ready for 2016 to end and to slay in 2017:

However, I have to say, 2017 hasn’t started off all that much better. I was sick most of January. We had two more Snowpocalypse episodes, effectively shutting down the city. There’s some serious stuff going on that is affecting my every move, thought, emotion. Plans for the coming year are all made with a quick escape route considering a last-minute cancellation might have to happen. I am, in effect, a big ole question mark right now. Not to mention all of the scary things that are happening in politics right now…

Plus, Jamie blamed a pistol squat sequence on me in front of her class the other day, which was pure lies…

My response: “Don’t you put that on me, Ricky Bobby.”

This is all pretty dramatic. Not that it’s not true, but it’s definitely not optimistic. And doesn’t accurately represent that there are definitely great things happening in right now, too.

  • Flex & Flow turned one, and classes are bigger and sweatier than ever!
  • We’ve almost completely sold out our first Sweat Pink / Flex & Flow retreat!
    • 2 spots are left, hurry hurry!
  • I leave for Breckenridge in less than 48 hours.
  • HIIT yoga is comin’ at ya! We’re getting ready to launch our FFYHIITYOGA training, first here in Portland and then online. We’re having a blast with filming classes right now!
  • BlogFest and our Empowered Race Series are both in full-blown active planning modes.
  • I’m surrounded by simply amazing people all the time.

See? So many exciting things happening and wonderful things for which to be grateful and happy.

What’s my number 1 way to calm the stress and turn off sad, stressful thoughts? SWEAT! Today we’re rocking out our last #BuildYourBestBody Friday Five workout with Hedstrom Fitness! We’ve loved having the Surge and Kamagon Balls in the studio this month. They’re definitely a #harderthanitlooks way to train; those brightly colored pieces of equipment contain an individualized amount of water. Fluid resistance helps you train dynamically as the water shifts as you move. Yup, definitely harder than it looks. 

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So grab those Surge and Kamagon Balls, and let’s see what sweaty, torturous fun they have in store for us today…

Oblique Twists

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Sumo Squat with Overhead Press

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Lunge and Press

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Skater Lunges

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Sit-ups

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Got the moves down? Let’s put it all together!  Take ten total reps of each move (each side counting as one for two-sided moves), and take it through 3 times! Take a peek on YouTube and follow along!

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Miss out on workouts 1-3? Here they are!

January 13blog ] [ video ]

January 20 [ blog ] [ video ]

January 27blog ] [ video ]


 

We’re taking National Red Day into today, too, promoting healthy hearts. Join the movement by rocking red today. And get motivated to move and get sweaty with a red Kamagon Ball! They are 25% off today until 11:59pm EST, and you’ll also get free shipping.  

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Miss out on the discount? You can get a special 25% off discount at www.hedstromfitness.com/sweatpink by using the code SPHF25. [ Code valid until 2.28. ]


 

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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Girls will be girls… WE MARCH!

By January 31, 2017 Local Living, Musings

I’m not going to get political, I’m going to get empowered!

At this point you’d have to be living under a rock to not notice the tension in the air right now. Since the election, all manner of emotions have been running high. No matter the side of the political spectrum you’re on, the tension is palpable. [Disclaimer: I am not making a political statement here, simply recognizing a tumultuous time in the US. I’m more than happy to make more decisive statements over wine later… ]

I’m very selective about what political statements I make online. I don’t like politics. There, I said it. They’re a very unifying or dividing topic. And often get in the way of the real issues. I strongly dislike conflict and prefer transparent communication that often seems absent from politics. So that’s why you’ll rarely see me sharing the latest political cartoon bashing some Washington muckity-muck that I just know will spark a righteous debate in the comment section.

Don’t get me wrong. I love conversing with people of differing backgrounds and opinions and discussing hot button issues. Religion, economics, abortion, gun control, the environment, travel… I have an opinion about it all. But here’s the thing: I will only talk about those issues face-to-face with people I know will actually listen to my opinion just as I will their’s. I’m pretty good at playing devil’s advocate. Even if I don’t agree with something doesn’t mean I can’t understand how someone could think that.

BUT… One thing I don’t understand is the resistance to unity. The idea that we are all in this together and the only way to succeed is to work together as equals.

Last Saturday I attended the Women’s March in Portland.

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I was going skiing. After teaching class that morning, I was planning on some much-needed solo time in the woods. But the energy was impossible to ignore. Everyone I talked to was going downtown to join. Pictures poured in from friends and family all over the country from marches they attended. I realized this isn’t just a D.C. thing that protest-loving Portland was tagging along to. This was a Historical Moment, one that I would look back on and want to have been a part of. This was a B.F.D.

Of course there was some Trump protesting going on, but the root of the movement was to rally for something that truly benefits us all, for women’s rights and equality. This is an issue that spans across ethnicity, nationality, sexual orientation, political party, and religion. [Check out the reasons this pro-life Republican stay-at-home mom joined in on the march! It wasn’t all hippie feminists.] These issues of gender equality affect us all.

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Time for some stats:

  • 1 in 3 women experience some physical or sexual abuse.  [1]
    • Women that have been sexually abused are more than twice as likely to have an abortion.
  • 92% of women have reported experiencing some form of sexual violence in public places sometime in their lifetime. [1]
  • Women spend more than twice as much time on “domestic work” and twice to ten times as much time a day caring for children, the elderly, or the sick as men. [2]
  • “Worldwide women are paid less than men, in most countries earning on average 60 – 75% of men’s wages.” [2]
  • Of the world’s 500 biggest corporations, less than 4% of the CEOs are women. [3]
  • As of 2015, there were only 19 female Heads of State or Government. [3]

What can we derive from these facts?

  1. Women are not considered equal in the majority of the world, not just in the US.
  2. We the women of the world are NOT ok with this!

As Aziz Ansari said in his opening monologue for SNL that Saturday night, an entire gender (and then some! Thanks girlpower-believing, men!) has risen up in protest at some of the decisions that are being made for them.

Isn’t that the root of it? We are women, hear us roar! So let us make the decisions. If we want to work, we deserve the same paycheck as our brothers. If we want to be moms, let us (with our baby daddies) choose when the right time is. If we wear a skirt, put on makeup, simply breathe, that does not mean we want to be grabbed; we will let you know if/when we want that. Yeah, consent is king.

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This is not a small group of people demanding these rights. It has been reported that 673 marches were held worldwide! Sydney, Paris, Buenos Aires, Kolkata, Lebanon, Malawi, all over the US, and even Antartica. [4] I heard that close to 750,000 people turned out in Los Angeles. Amazing attendance, creative signage, and completely peaceful!

It was estimated that 20,000 people would show here in Portland and over 100,000 turned out! [5] Rain and crazy traffic didn’t stop people from taking over the streets and waterfront park in downtown Portland to make a statement for the cause. My three girlfriends and I walked up to the crowds and immediately became one with movement. Chants, signs, costumes, props, men, women, children. All were present. All were unified.

My gaze constantly shifted, trying to take in as much of the stimuli as possible. The signs, oh the creative signs…

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Down in the Waterfront Park, a stage was set up and people congregated. A DJ was playing dance music. After marching through the city streets, people broke it down! Dancing outside in the rain and mud with 100,000 people of every gender, age, race, occupation, and any other “group” you could think of, and all in honor of women’s rights, was an experience I’ll never be able to forget.

Never before have I been a part of something like that. There was anger, fear, and uncertainty present, yes. But the amazing thing is that it left us feeling … hopeful! Inspired. Empowered.

As Aziz said again, it takes big groups of angry people to enact change, and if day 1 is any indicator…

Girl power.


 

Sources:

  1. UN Women
  2. Womankind
  3. United Nations: The World’s Women 2015
  4. Mic.com
  5. Oregon Live
  6. CNN

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

By January 27, 2017 balanced lifestyle, Yoga

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

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.

#BuildYourBestBody Friday FiveWorkout

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

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

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

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

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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