Oh, Hey May!

Hiiiiiii! What a fantastic weekend! And…y’all, its MAY!!!! How is that even possible! May is one of my favorite months though, so I welcome it with open arms! May, in my eyes, is kicking off Summer.  And, this Summer, I have SO many fun things, weddings and trips planned. I just can’t wait! This weekend was a full one, check out my review below!

So in review, I had a crazy, FUN, & busy weekend! Weekends really do go by so fast, especially when they are jammed. Monday mornings sure do come around quickly! Friday night was spent at home organizing things for the next day. Nothing too crazy.

Saturday was one of my best friends Bridal Shower in Ohio.  So lots of planning and fun was had by all! It was a wine theme…and I had a lot of fun creating the decorations and drinking all the wine.  The shower took place about two hours away.  So I drove up early on Saturday and had to come home that same night.  I LOVE seeing my friends from college.  We always pick up right where we left off, like we never missed a beat.  It was a fabulous shower! Now…onto planning the Bachelorette weekend, WOOO!

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After spending time with my best gal pals, I came home and relaxed a bit before passing out! Only to wake up early on Sunday for the Pittsburgh Marathon!!! I ran in the Marathon Relay! I was running the last leg which was 4.2 miles.  Guys, I had a BLAST!!!!! It was seriously SO much fun. I know its not the half or the full….but it was a real challenge for me, and I DID IT!  I have been training a bit, here and there, and I really was proud of myself for surviving! I am not a runner, it is a struggle for me. I am really striving to be more of a runner/jogger,  I think its more mental for me.  But the marathon crowd was so encouraging, energetic, and motivating…I just kept on pushing through! I can’t get over the crowds, seriously, the best! If you follow me on SNAPCHAT (jhiggs787) you had to see some of the crowds, bands and crazy folks who were cheering us on! So CONGRATS to all the people who ran in the full marathon, half, and relay!!!!!! I am definitely planning on doing it again next year, who knows, maybe ill do the half! say whaaaaaaaat?!?!

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After the race, Nick and I went to Pipers Pub! I had a large Bloody Mary 🙂  and some yummy food! The rest of the afternoon/evening was spent relaxing and taking it easy! All in all it was such an awesome weekend.  My highlight…seeing my friends from college and crossing that finish line! 🙂

What was the highlight of your weekend?!  

 

At Home Body Bootcamp Workout

A heart pumping workout that you can do anywhere with little to no equipment right in your own home or at your gym! You will work on your strength and endurance with this workout.  

 I have been teaching an early morning Bootcamp class for the past couple of weeks.  Its an hour long, starts at 6:00 AM for six weeks! For all those who have been reading this blog for awhile now, you know I am NOT a morning person.  And guess what…I have really been enjoying these classes! We have just a few classes left and I may start another session. I just have to make sure I have everything set up and prepared the night before (another post on that soon).

This morning was a great workout that focused on strength and endurance.  We did lots of timed exercises in increments of 90 seconds, 60 seconds, and 30 seconds. I wanted to share our warm-up that we did this morning! I’ll add the second portion soon!

I love this workout because it is so easy to do anywhere at anytime! It is definitely an at home workout OR one you can do in your gym!

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It really gets your heart rate up and those arms will start to feel like jello! Its a good one ladies (and gentlemen)! If you have questions on any of the moves, comment below and I can direct you where to look!

What is your favorite warm-up or workout to do at home?!

 

 

Five Top Reasons I love Group Fitness

I love a good workout. You know, the kind where your drenched in sweat, legs are shaking, and your arms feel like jello and you cannot wait to shower.  I know I am not alone here! Ever since high school, I have taken group fitness classes.  Either at a local gym OR at my mom’s fitness studio in Pittsburgh! I continued to do so in college. I would make sure I would attend, I “penciled” the classes into my schedule, grab my girlfriends, and would head to the university gym.  My favorites classes included and still include Power Step, Body PUMP/body sculpting, spinning, zumba…the list goes on.  I loved taking classes so much, that I got my group fitness and personal training certification a few years ago!

After I graduated college, moved home…and started my “big girl” life and now living on my own…I would attend classes here and there at my moms studio…but not like I did in the past. Long story short….My career as a wellness/fitness coordinator and personal trainer/group fitness instructor got in the way. I know, sounds crazy! People think I exercise all day long.  And Yes, some days, I do. So when its time for my workout…I am tired!! And that’s the problem.  Say WHAAAAAT! I LOVE teaching classes and challenging my participates in my classes, I feel like I will always be a group fitness instructor. I love coming up with routines and new ways to workout the same muscles and finding NEW music.  However….Sometimes I like to be the student.  I thought I would share my top five reasons to take a group fitness class…even for those of you who enjoy working out on your own!

five reasons1. Motivation. It might sound cliche, but it is SO true.  There is nothing like being in a room filled with people who are all there to WORKOUT.  The instructor is pushing you, the participants are pushing you…It all keeps you accountable.  Its so motivating to me when I hear the instructor say….higher, push, legs stronger…so on and so forth! If you find you lack motivation in the middle of your workout…group fitness may be just what you need.

2. New Moves. As an instructor and fitness professional, I am always looking for new and challenging exercises.  Even before I was an instructor, I would love to find new innovative moves to do on my own in the gym or at home.  It may be as simple as a new way to do a lunge or a shoulder press.  But the important thing is…I feel like it freshens up my personal workouts. Also, if your instructor keeps the same routine for a few weeks…you can perfect your moves, becoming stronger.

3. Pushes you outside of your comfort zone. I am speaking for myself here, but when I teach a group fitness class, I am watching the participants to make sure the are safe in their form.  I am not totally concentrating on my workout.  So when I take a class, its my time to focus on ME.  Group fitness classes push me in my fitness level.  They push me outside of my comfort zone…takes my heart rate to the next level, my lunges a little lower, or even my sprint a little faster.  They allow me to work extra hard.  Being motivated to keep pace with the rest of the crowd means that you’ll be challenged to work harder. Working out on our own can be fantastic, but I know me…and I tend not to work as hard as  when I am alone.

4. Socialization. Another cliche, but again, SO TRUE! I love seeing familiar faces as well as seeing new faces. I love meeting new people.  I am always asking friends to join me in my classes.  Its much healthier than a happy hour…some days lol! Many people in my group fitness classes have become friends!

5. Its a BLAST. To me, it is much more fun to do alllllll the moves with others than with yourself…you can dance, kick, lunge, squat, and punch to loud amazing music and sing along.  Music is everything to me when I workout. The more enjoyable the workout, the more likely you will be excited to go to the gym. Also, there is SO much variety in group fitness.  You can choose step, kickboxing, Pilates, yoga, spinning, bootcamp, zumba…and on and on….soooooo much to choose from!!

There you have it, all the reasons I LOVE group fitness classes.  I hope you try a class.

Do you enjoy group fitness.  What is your number one reason?!

 

Best Ways to Relax!

Happy Friday Friends!!!!

STRESS?! Do you have stress in your life?! I know I do, I bet you do too.  And guess what…not to deliver all the bad news on a Friday…however, you will always have stress in your life! It’s not going anywhere.  “Stressors” came in all shapes and sizes, stress does not discriminate.  BUT…I am here to tell you, one thing that can change, is how you DEAL with stress. You have all the control! It’s so important to find ways to RELAX! In honor of Stress Awareness Month, I thought I would share some great things that work for me!

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Breathe Mindfully. I tell you what friends, deep breathing really works.  Place your hands on your stomach, breathe in deeply, pushing/feeling your hands move with each breath, and exhale deeply.  Do this five times.  You will feel more relaxed instantly.  Once I started practicing this, I noticed a big difference in how I deal with “stressful” situations.  It goes a long way…go ahead, try it!

Pamper Yourself! Yes, I mean it.  Take a bubble bath.  Take an extra long shower.  Get a manicure.  Whatever floats your boat! Treat YO self! I always feel better when I do. Do something you enjoy, quality “ME” time!

Move More! Yes, you didn’t think I would forget exercise, did you?! Move more and move often.  Get your heart rate up, break a serious sweat.  Your body will release those endorphin’s, you know, those feel good chemicals! Just do it, you’ll thank me later!!!

Create a Sanctuary. Light a candle.  clean your room.  hang a picture that makes your feel happy. Turn on your essential oil diffuser.  Create a room that feels positive! Do whatever it takes to create a sense of peace!

Read! Read something that you enjoy, simply for pleasure! All I know is when I divulge myself into a reallllllly good book, I don’t think of anything else! My mind is relaxed and next thing you know, two hours have passed by!

Hang with your pet! Maybe its just me, but when I hang with Henry or Louie…My heart just bursts! It makes me feel good when I snuggle with those cuties.

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Aromatherapy! You know how much I LOVE my essential oils!!  My life is so much better with them in it.  I use so many for so many different reasons, including relaxation.  Lavender and grounding blend are my go to’s for stress relief! If you would like a sample…send me email! myhealthypassion1@gmail.com

These are just a few things I do for relaxation…What do you do to relax?! Any tips?!

The Idea of Yoga

How was everyone’s Monday?! Yesterday, was great! Jumped right back into the swing of things. It was a day of catching up on lots of emails/calls/and work. It was definitely a long Monday! I even ended my day with a little body pump!IMG_3020

 

Oh and can we talk about The Bachelor?! Can you say #drama My goodness! Lots of crazies and fun! Who do you like so far?! I still think it’s too soon to tell, but I did like Brit! I can wait to see what this season hold, my total Monday night guilty pleasure!

Today, I am trying a yoga class. I don’t really “like” yoga but I think I love the idea of yoga. I personally feel It’s too slow, leaves me with my thoughts, thinking of everything else I could be doing, makes me feel anxious… Not sure why?! You may be thinking… Then why are you going to a yoga class? #weirdo
Because my friends, I feel need it. I need the movement, I need the calmness, stillness, and to learn how to center my thoughts. I’m not even sure I know what the means. But the “idea” of centering my thoughts sounds like what I need. I constantly crave the feeling that yoga gives…Or maybe it’s the idea of yoga I crave. That “let it be” motto, go with flow attitude, calm ora that I’m striving for in 205. Is that real life? I mean, come on?! Any yogis out there, can you justify!
One of my “intentions” for the new year is to be more mindful. More mindful in all I do! To be present in all moments. And that folks, is hard for me! I think it’s hard for most, right?! I can’t be alone in thinking that! That’s why yoga and meditative practices are so challenging for me. I mean, #TheStruggleIsReal.
I came across this article tonight and wanted to share and thought you guys would like it… 12 ways yoga changed my life.
Do you take yoga? How do you practice mindfulness?