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First Week of ClassPass

Last week I decided to take advantage of the free month of workout classes offered by ClassPass for January 2019. I have always been a sports/running/gym person, and haven't taken classes since my cardio pilates days at Bucknell. In the spirit of the new year and taking advantage of deals, I signed up. The offer is for 45 credits that can be used for ~6-7 classes, though they also offer "wellness" options that include blowouts and massages.

I started last week and took three classes at very different studios downtown. Being insanely inflexible, yoga was a necessary choice for the first week. It was also a complete reverse culture shock to feel like I was back at the Bucknell gym, surrounded by 20 something females decked out in Lululemon and carrying S'well water bottles (myself included). The full membership is expensive, and worth weighing the pros and cons, but here is a short summary/review of my first week. {Image}

Mind Body Bootcamp57 W 16th St, New York, NY 10011
The Good: This class was a combination of yoga, kickboxing and basic cardio. There were several times that we were instructed to just release all out energy with every punch and kick. While it felt a bit much at first, I really liked the communal feeling in the room of everyone doing it together. 
The Bad: Not too much to report- the class was the perfect combination of challenging, engaging, and fun. 
Final Takeaway: Overall, a solid class that started and ended calmly. ☆☆ ☆ 1/2

Pure Barre |  80 Pine St, New York, NY 10005 
I had been wanting to try Pure Barre specifically for a while after hearing rave reviews. 
The Good: It's an efficient workout and I felt thoroughly sore. 
The Bad: I like to consider myself pretty in shape, however this was painful. Additionally, you have to have grip socks and the only ones at Target were toe socks...enough said. (No shade to anyone who likes toe socks, but when you are doing barre movements in a room full of non toe socks, it feels a little weird.)
Final Takeaway: A good workout, but I would not recommend for your first workout class. ☆☆ 

Soul Sweat Yoga @Laughing Lotus | 636 6th Ave 3rd floor, New York, NY 10011
The Good: This class was the perfect combination of challenging flexibility and strength. The studio was enormous and colorfully decorated- truthfully, I kept thinking about what I would do with an apartment space that size. 
The Bad: I made the mistake of sitting in the front row. I have taken a couple of yoga classes, but not enough to feel like I could easily hold my own. I found myself looking at the expert next to me (who had every right to be in the front row). 
Final Takeaway: The perfect way to end the weekend/start the week. If you are looking for a way to end the weekend feeling ready for Monday, I highly recommend a yoga class. I was able to get a good workout in, and even run a couple of last minute errands to Trader Joes and Bed, Bath and Beyond with no lines while finishing an audio book- ideal Sunday night! ☆☆ ☆☆ 

iPhone Shots from Monterey, Carmel and Big Sur

Happy 2019! I wanted to share a couple of snapshots from a recent road trip Luc and I took down CA Hwy 1. We went to Big Sur, Monterey and Carmel- a couple of hours south of San Francisco. Unfortunately, we didn't take a bunch of pictures of us, but the views speak for themselves. 

This was a great breakfast place in Monterey- check out First Awakenings if you are in the area!

One of the best ways to end a year that I could have imagined- watching the sun go down over the Pacific, glass of wine in hand. 


Happy Thanksgiving! It felt a little odd to not put some kind of intro in this post. Thank you to everyone who sent kind words regarding last week's blog- hope you have a great week!

When asked what people want to ultimately achieve in their life, a common answer is "happiness." Like many others, "being happy" has been my default for years, but throughout the past year, I have changed it to being content. 

Living in NYC often contradicts this goal. It is a place that thrives off of people wanting more- better jobs, higher salaries, bigger apartments and putting the effort in to get there. While this makes the city an exciting and inspiring place, it constantly works against contentment. 

Sometime soon, I would like to go a week without complaining to tally how much I do and see the positive effects of cutting out whining about the smallest inconveniences. If you keep up with the news enough, there are plenty of reasons to be grateful for a safe home, free speech and running water. These overlooked parts of our everyday life are not a given to everyone. This morning, I was listening to the NYT's The Daily (highly recommend it to everyone) that featured the war in Yemen and it served as another reminder that there are a lot of things to be appreciative about living in the United States. 

I remember meeting with my banker, Rubi at Chase about a year ago. Right into my job, I was a bit stressed with figuring out a budget and making expenses work in an expensive city. She told me, "if you are saving some money, paying your bills and enjoying the city, you're doing something right." Aka stop stressing, appreciate what you have, make good decisions when you can, and everything will be alright. Writing down things we are thankful for, planning experiences to look forward to and taking the time to slow down this weekend where there is time fills voids that money and feelings of superiority never could. 

I wish you a Happy Thanksgiving this week, and a holiday season of family, food and content. {image}

10 Things in 1 Year

September 26th marked my one year in New York City. What a year it has been. The past thirteen months have been by far and away the craziest, challenging and most interesting year of my life. Through taking a break from writing here, I have been able to develop my voice and figure out what direction I want to take this good old blog. Additionally, writing is a skill that must always be practiced, and I don't want to have my degree go to waste. Here are ten things I have learned in the past year of working and living in NYC:

Learning“The sexiest thing in the entire world is being really smart. And being thoughtful. And being generous. Everything else is crap! I promise you! It's just crap that people try to sell to you to make you feel like less. So don't buy it. Be smart, be thoughtful, and be generous.” I think about this Ashton Kutcher quote a lot from a few years back. Admittedly, living in a bubble at Bucknell and camp over the summer, I didn't pay a ton of attention to the news and what was going on. While it can be needed and relaxing, it's also always good to have a real answer when someone asks what you've been reading. Additionally, learn from every experience and person you meet- good, bad and ugly. 

Self Awareness | Since January 1st, I have been keeping a journal. While I wonder if I will eventually burn the whole thing, it's also something that I know will be invaluable some day in the future. My boyfriend Luc is very good at calling me out when I am making a mistake, and I do the same with him. Having a friend, parent or significant other to lean on prevents you from becoming a jerk. People will always remember how they felt around you, and adulthood is the time to think of others. 

Organization | Somewhere in the middle of college, I started to become a neater person, and over the past year, it has become essential. Making the bed, doing the dishes, the whole thing. 

Relationships + Friends | I have learned a lot about what it means to have important people in life. Family is everything and no matter how many times I may call my mom, she always answers and listens, and for that, I am truly grateful. Close friends from childhood and college are to be cherished, even when they are far away. Additionally, if you don't really care to know what your high school acquaintance is doing on an everyday basis, that's ok to unfollow them too. 

Growing Up | It's inevitable and I am learning more that it takes time to settle things after college. Everyone goes through the adulthood transition in their own way. No one is judging you for paying a mortgage for a windowless bedroom, so you shouldn't judge them either. 

Time | I wish I had as much free time as I did at Bucknell- or at least that someone would have properly warned me about that?

Money | It's easy to spend money in New York, but knowing that you have more than $20 in your bank account is a lot more satisfying. You probably didn't learn nearly enough about finance, so you're gonna have to do the work yourself. 

Kindness | In high school, one of my friend Olivia, who is still my pen pal today always said hi to everyone. I remember admiring that and tried to do that more. People who work at Starbucks taking coffee orders all day, co-workers and especially people in a lower job title deserve kindness and respect the most. 

Death | This year, I experienced the first real death in my family. My grandfather died in January, and with that came a lot of changes in our family. While it was sad and still sometimes gets to me, I am so grateful that I was able to live into my 20's with him actively in my life. It also serves as a reminder that most of the stuff we deal with everyday doesn't matter. A lot of crappy things may happen to you in a day, but you are alive and here. My grandfather loved nothing more than slathering on baby oil, turning on the radio and sitting in the sun to fry. This is not recommended, and he did not get any skin illness (thank god) but it's all about the little things in life. 

Integrity | Integrity is everything. Reputation is everything. Without it, we are nothing- may be dramatic, but it's truth. Working in an environment where many politicians (on both sides of the aisle) have compromised their integrity, I have seen firsthand the destruction. 

Ending the post on an upbeat note, but will be back very soon (promise) with more!

4 Podcasts I Love

I'm sorry for writing such a millennial post, but it had to be done. To be honest, I am not the biggest T.V. and movie person and would much rather watch a short online video, read or listen to a podcast (in addition to watching episodes of The Office on in the background). In traveling for work/summer the past couple of months, I have found myself on the Apple podcast app frequently. 

A good podcast requires a lot of elements to work in unison- a good "shtick," quality guests, engaging topics and a good dynamic between hosts. These are some of my personal favorites- I hope you enjoy them as much as I have!

The Daily | This is a podcast produced by the New York Times daily that discusses one major news topic per episode in roughly 20 minutes. The Daily is one of the most popular news podcasts out there, for good reason. The host is interesting without taking away from the journalism- in my opinion, this is the most accessible, interesting way to understand what is going on, and can be done during my commute. 

TMG Podcast/Insanely Chill  | Cody and Noel are hilarious and Cody Ko may be one of the only people I can listen talk for 45 minutes solo about life. This is definitely the guilty pleasure of the bunch, and a great way to block out the world. 

In Line with AmeriBerry | Pretty typical formula of two friends, Sara and Katherine, who are also recent graduates. I love this one for the topics especially, ranging from consumerism to social media. 

51 First DatesThis was the podcast that got me hooked at the beginning of the year. Hosts Liza and Kimmy discuss dating as a late 20's/early 30's woman as Kimmy embarks on going on 51 first dates weekly throughout the year. 

Have a great weekend!