Why Don’t More Men do Pilates?

Usually, I’m the one who is writing the blog posts on here about my experiences and knowledge but Bryan and I have been talking about him doing a post for a little on his personal experience with Pilates and how it has affected him. So now that he has been doing Pilates for over a year here is his opinion on Pilates and the benifits he has seen.

Until about a year ago, I never fathomed the possibility of ever taking a group fitness class. I was your typical former high-school athlete, way less limber and flexible than I was a decade ago in my glory days. My typical workout routine consisted of stationary weight lifting, with a few bouts of cardio throughout the week, occasionally mixing in a run or hike. This type of working out was a way for me to ‘maintain’ my muscle, stay fairly trim and still feel like I was putting in the time and work to my physical fitness.

Who knew that some of the best and most elite male athletes utilize Pilates as a way to master their craft? Steelers All-Pro receive Antonio Brown and Phillies pitcher Jake Arietta are two star-studded athletes just to name a few. Both of these athletes employ Pilates as a way to maintain both physical and mental well-being. Perhaps this can help remove the ‘stigmas’ that surround Pilates and its efficacy.

Fast forward to today… I am 10 years post back surgery. In 2009, I had a minimally invasive back surgery consisting of a lumbar discectomy, which in layman’s terms essentially meant I had two herniated disks in my lower back (L4, L5, S1) that were pressing on my sciatic nerve. I used to make excuses about not being able to run, my inflexibility and lack or core strength to support my back. Enter Pilates. I had never taken Pilates before, let alone even really understand the basic principles and concepts. Add in the fact that my workouts, like most, got stale over time. My body was used to the same movements, even if I switched up exercises, and I knew it was time for something new. I also had no need to keep the bulky upper body muscle that I once used in sports. What started out as a simple date idea with my current girlfriend, turned into a lifestyle alteration.

Over this past year, what I once thought was a workout meant for ‘woman’, has turned out to have more benefits than I could have imagined. Sure, the majority of my mat and reformer classes have been female-dominated, but I now have a new appreciation for the art of functional movements, flexibility, and core strength. I have developed a real affinity for the different types of Pilates I have been able to experience recently. Maybe Men just do not like being told what to do…

In my opinion, Mat Pilates is probably the most underrated form of Pilates. It requires balance, body awareness and the ability to utilize your own body weight. Most folks think you need a ‘machine’ in order to work out, but truth be told, I personally think Mat can be more of a balance challenge. The core principal relay on core strength (no pun intended), where basically every move requires some type of abdominal engagement. This engagement has been particularly useful to someone like myself, who would rather find different ways to work my core (to support my back) in ways other than your standard sit-up, which can cause back pain. The movements of Pilates are very mindful and the flows are meant to limit compromising positions and allow for modifications if need be. It isn’t just about having abs and a six-pack, but rather a strong core to support my upper body strength and back needs.

Mixing in one or two Pilates classes a week has really helped out in many aspects of my life, both mentally and physically. There are the obvious benefits, such as increased hamstring flexibility, a stronger core, as well as more toned legs. The intangible benefits for me have been less daily back pain, and the ability to run and sprint at places such as Barry’s Bootcamp (11.5! what what). Though, I still try and steer clear of intense jumping movements, I’m able to jump squat, do jumping jacks and jack squats no issue! I have been able to perform more HIIT-focused workouts, helping build more lean muscle and provide valuable fat loss.

The other major benefit for me has come in the form of snowboarding. Snowboarding has long been my favorite athletic activity. I began skiing when I was 3 years old and have been skiing/snowboarding consistently ever since, including living in Colorado for 5 years where I racked up over 100 days. The 2009 winter was the first and only winter I had missed due to injury. This was a major blow to me, as my surgery recovery spanned about 7 months from Sept- April of that year. Post-surgery. I was limited to only being able to go one day and not feeling up to going a second day in a row due to back pain. However, Pilates has changed that and allowed me to shred back to back days, without the effects I used to feel after a hard day.

Having a strong grasp of these basic Pilates principals allows me to practice flows anywhere I have a mat and some time, even without professional instruction or a studio. Hopefully, I have inspired some of the men out there or at least informed their significant others that there are amazing benefits for your male counterpart. Remember, it’s not just about the physical result, there is a strong mental component to Pilates. Whether working on your breathing, letting go of real-world stresses or just needing to ‘sweat it out’, exercising in general is a great release and way to keep you strong mentally. Pilates is a great form of exercise, something I will continue to do as I get older, plus it is a great way to get a couples workout in. You know what they say, “Couples who work out together, stay together”. My regular workouts now consist of gym workouts (3-4 times), with Pilates and HIIT workouts weaved in once a week, keeping things fun and interesting for myself.

My goal is to help break down stigmas and educate my male counterparts on this unique type of fitness platform. Young, old, short, or tall, there is some type of mindful movement for everyone.


Things to Know for all Barre Newbies

As someone who has been teaching barre for 3 years, it amazes me when I meet someone who has never taken a barre class. It seems like a lot of people are mainly just scared about trying something new, trust me I know that the unknown is scary. I’m someone who usually sticks to a routine and hates changes.

But the reason for this post is to give you some insight on what you can expect for your first barre class, so you can feel comfortable to get your booty into a class asap. I love barre classes especially at MNTSTUDIO, I always leave feeling like I got a full body and well-rounded workout. As someone who was a dancer from a young age, I love the aspect of using the music for the movement and staying on the beat. However don’t be intimated if you’ve never danced before, my boyfriend who has no rhythm(Sorry Bryan) loves these classes too.

Barre classes are focused on strength, balance, and flexibility making them great for cross-training. Within a few minutes of class, you will find yourself shaking and using muscles you’ve never used before. Generally, when we work out on our own we work on the things we’re good at and like to do. So these classes are great to work on those areas that you’re not focusing on otherwise and it will make you stronger overall and less prone to injuries.

Wear Appropriate Attire

Photo: MNTSTUDIO

You should wear tight-fitted clothing so your instructor can see your form, to ensure you’re doing the movement correctly and avoid injury. I recommend wearing full-length pants or capris because you might be doing some movements where you hold a ball with your leg so the bare skin would make it slippery. Also, wear grippy socks to your class, these will help you from slipping and give you traction when making sudden movements. Even if the studio you’re going to doesn’t require them I recommend having them. Think about all of the germs on the studio floor from people sweating and all the barefeet everywhere. For socks my favorite brand is ToeSox,  they are great for when you’re moving quickly during barre classes because with each individual toe separated they stay on your feet and don’t move around like other brands. 

Show Up Early

Usually, when you’re attending a studio for the first time, you should arrive at least 10 minutes early. They might need to have you sign a waiver and also may give you a tour of the studio. Showing up early is also a good idea so you can get set up with any props you may need for the class, or change into your workout clothes without feeling rushed. You should also try to get set up near the instructor, this will help when you need to see what movements you’re supposed to do. This is also very important if you have an injury. Your instructor needs to know what is going on with your body and how they can help keep you safe and get the best out of your workout.

Embrace Those Shakes

For your first class, you may not be the most graceful person, but this isn’t a dance class so don’t let that get to you. Everyone will be struggling just the same even if they come every week, so they won’t be paying attention even if you’re going the opposite direction. Most people in their first class see the weights and usually go for the heaviest ones. However, don’t be fooled! Those little 2 lbs and 3 lb weights get very heavy during class. A lot of exercises in barre are small isometric movements that work your muscles in a targeted area. So your muscles will burn and you might even be shaking uncontrollably during the class. However, always be sure to listen to your body and take breaks whenever needed. All instructors should be able to give you any modifications you may need to help with any injuries you have.

HAVE FUN!

Don’t get discouraged during your first few barre classes, it might take a few classes to get the moves down. No matter if it is your first or hundredth class, it’s going to be a great workout so just try to enjoy the class and music. Even as an instructor I still have to come out of some exercises during a class because my legs and butt are burning! I’m someone that is motivated by music so I like to sing the songs to myself a little while taking a class maybe do a little wiggly dance. 😉

I hope this helps to give you a little insight on how to prepare and feel ready for your first barre class. I would love to see you in one of my barre classes soon, you can check out my schedule here! If you’ve never been to MNTSTUDIO before I have a special surprise for you. 🙂 Message me and your first barre class will be free.  

If you have any tips to share please comment below! I would love to hear from you.

Feeling tight? 5 ways to help you recover faster.

Are your muscles sore, tight and tired? The is a common issue from pushing your body harder than normal during a workout or from a new exercise that challenged your muscles in a new way. Personally I always get a little giddy when I’m sore because I know I’m using new muscles and pushing myself, but it’s not something you should be trying to achieve every workout. My favorite is when my obliques or inner thighs are sore. (I know I’m weird!)

With training for my half-marathon and Spartan Race, I’ve been pushing my body in new ways, with running and also lifting weights. So I’ve been spending a little extra time giving my muscles some much needed recovery. Research has shown that your after workout routine is just as important as what you do during your workout in order to see the results you want. Here are my favorite ways of easing sore muscles post workout!

Stay Hydrated

I know this one seems like a no brainer. But honestly it’s so easy to forget to replenish your body especially during and after your workout. Staying hydrated can help you flush out toxins in your body that can cause muscle fatigue and cramps. It will also help you avoid dehydration which can cause muscles soreness to be more painful.

I recently got this bottle that helps me track how much water I’m drinking. In general, you should try to drink between half an ounce to an ounce of water for each pound you weight, every day! Within the first week of using this bottle I realized I was only drinking half that amount everyday. I was totally shocked, so this really helps to bring your awareness to the amount you’re drinking.

If you can find a bottle that is easy to carry around you will be more likely to drink more water since water will be close by.  Also, if it’s cute that helps me drink more water because I want to see it and show it off so I have it in my hands, but made sure it’s easy to close so it doesn’t leak all over.

Foam Roll

While a massage is a great way to ease sore muscles and help flush out toxins, it’s not always the most affordable. That is why having a foam roller is the best item to have at home. Foam Rolling has the same effect as a massage on your muscles, it’s a technique that’s called self-myofascial release. The pressure from rolling your muscles on the roller helps release tight muscles and fascia, plus is easy to target a specific area of your body that need a little TLC.

You should get in the habit of rolling out your muscles even when you’re not sore. Spending a few minutes with a foam roller could improve your range of motion, increase flexibility, and help alleviate any muscle tightness/soreness. A lot of people get really intimidated by rolling out or don’t know how to use it to target specific muscles so here is a recent post with some ideas.

Cupping

This is pretty much the first thing I did after my half marathon. Cupping can help loosen muscles, fascia and encourages blood flow. Cupping is a great tool to relieve back and neck pains, stiff muscles, anxiety, and migraines. The pressure from the cup pulls new blood to an area on your body to accelerate healing and is very effective at loosening tight fascia and muscles.

This is not a super common at home practice, however it’s totally doable. I purchased this at home cupping kit off amazon for $13 a year ago, and this has saved me so many times when my neck or back get knots and are stiff. You can get a kit with a hose and pump to be able to do it yourself.

I usually do 2-4 pumps depending on how it feels, and leave the cups on for about 10-15 minutes.  After it feels a little tight still but it starts to loosen up a few minutes after. Just be prepared to have weird purpleish circles on your body for a week or so. 

Stretch

Lengthening and stretching your muscles is just as important as flexing and contracting the muscles during your working to build strength, create toned muscles and avoid injuries. You should never finish a workout without stretching after. While stretching may not completely relieve the lingering pain of a intense workout it can help your muscle fibers become healthier and more elastic. Which will help your muscles bounce back faster, so you hopefully don’t have to walk funny for a week. 

Keep Moving

I know that when we’re sore the last thing we want to do it move anything, but that’s exactly what your body needs. Usually a light walk, Yoga class or swimming are great options to give your body a little break while working out some kinks and sore muscles. I always find that after a little movement my body feels so much better than if I just sit on the couch and watch a movies. Getting in some light cardio or stretching will help improve circulation and relieve your aches and pains.

 

So if you’ve done an intense workout, be sure to give your body a little time to recover but also try one or all of these little tricks to get your blood moving and body feeling like 100 bucks again!

3 Ways to Keep Rolling

By now foam rolling is something we’ve all seen or have heard of at least once, but not everyone knows how to use one. Foam rolling is such an amazing way to help ease muscle tensions, improve flexibility and range of motion in your entire body. This should only take 10 to 15 minutes — you could do it every day but I recommend at least once or twice a week. Ready? Let’s get rolling.

Glutes/Piriformis

Your glutes are such a big muscle but so many people forget to stretch them. Unfortunately, tight glutes and a piriformis can cause, back pain, runners knee and IT band syndrome.

  • Sitting on the roller horizontally under your body
  • Cross left ankle over your right knee
  • Lean onto your left glute
  • Roll back and forth, and draw circles on your glute using the roller
  • Try an static hold on specific tight areas by holding still for five seconds
  • Roll out right glutes for 30 to 60 second, then switch to the other side

Lower Back

Lower back pain in very common especially with our culture of sitting at desks for long hours everyday. Even active people find they have back pain or sensitive lower backs from running or lifting with poor form. Rolling out your back can even help with mobility and flexibility in your glutes.  

  • Sit on the ground, lift your hips up and place your lower back on foam roller
  • With both feet firmly on the ground, lean over to the right side
  • Roll up and down the length of your lower back. Be mindful of your spine!
  • Roll out right glutes for 30 to 60 second, then switch to the other side

IT band

The IT band is a thick strand of fascia that runs the length of your thigh; when it gets tight, it can pull the knee out of alignment. This band is vital for stability in your knee especially during running, so, if you have a tight IT band you’re risking the knee to track out of alignment. 

  • Lying on your side, almost in a side plank, place your roller on the side of your thigh right below your hip
  • Roll the length of your thigh, and stopping just above the knee. Go slowly, and be sure to not roll over the knee joint.
  • Keep your top leg stacked, or place the foot onto the floor to give you less pressure
  • If you find an especially tender point, try rolling forward and back to release the spot
  • Roll for 30-60 seconds, then switch sides
  • This one might be painful, which means you really need to do this!

Good luck rolling out, be sure to move slow at first as it can be painful! Have questions? Feel free to contact me. 🙂 Xo Carlie

 

5 Must Know Tips When Washing Your Activewear

Have you ever been working out then suddenly get a little whiff of what seems like week old body odor…..Instantly I always think it is me, I get super uncomfortable and start obsessing over figuring out if it is me or someone around me. Smelling bad is my worst nightmare as a fitness instructor, because I get close to clients when correcting form. Most days I’m in my activewear all day from 6am – 9pm and I don’t want someone to pass out from my stench. Or be like one of those cartoons that walk around with a green smoke cloud!

But if you love wearing workout clothes and smelling fresh, I’ve got 5 tips for you to try during your next laundry day. These tips will help you keep your clothes looking and smelling like new!

 

1. Don’t let sweaty clothes sit

Most of us will take off our nasty sweaty clothes once we get home and toss them into the hamper or maybe just in a pile on the floor…same thing right? Either way doing this right after a workout, your clothes will probably stay damp and sweaty for a few days before we’re actually able to wash them. This is just asking for gross smelling bacteria to grow and the odor to set into your clothes even after you wash them.

After an intense workout you should hang dry your clothes to prevent bad odors not only on your workout clothes but also so your normal clothes don’t start to smell in your hamper. I like to set mine aside to dry overnight before putting in the hamper.

 

2. Turn everything inside out

Turning your clothes inside out, makes sense when you think about it. All of your sweat and dead even skin cells are on the material on the inside of your clothes, so by flipping them inside out you’re actually washing the dirty part of your clothes where the sweat and skin cells are.

This is also really important to protect your clothes from fading, snagging and to keep your foil logos looking like new. I don’t know about you but I was taught to turn my jean inside out to prevent fading and also to place my delicates in a separate bag. You should be putting the same care into your fitness pieces, after all they do cost a lot of money! 

 

3. Fitness Specified detergent

Having the proper detergent can make a big difference in smelling like a grassy meadow with hints of lavender or like the current Guinness World Record holder for body odor…. You don’t want to be that person! There are specific detergents that can help fight against odor causing bacteria in your clothes. I also love using Downy Unstopables in the fresh scent.

The day after I used Downy Unstopables for the first time, I was in a class and we did a forward fold, I suddenly felt like I was in a commercial. I got a whiff of my clothes and everything around me just stopped while I kept smelling my clothes. Kinda weird when you realize you’re in a class just smelling yourself. Haha but no shame I smelled damn good!

While it is nice to have that fresh and clean smell in your clothes you need to also make sure you’re not overdoing the detergent. Using too much can actually make your clothes stink, it’s like the story about the three little bears but with your workout clothes. While too little doesn’t clean your clothes, too much could be worst. Washing machines use the same amount of water even if you add more soap, so all the excess detergent will stay in your clothes. Making your clothes the perfect home for fungus and mildew to grow. 

 

4. Use the Proper Settings

Fitness clothes are not cheap but they can last you a long time if you take proper care of them. When washing use only cold water and on a delicate spin cycle. This will help prevent fading, shrinkage and the fabric from breaking down.

 

5. Hang to Dry

Extreme heat is the easiest way to ruin your super cute workout clothes. You can quickly go from fabulous to fading in two washes! The best way to ensure your clothes don’t fade, pill, melt or shrink is it air-dry them. Since I live in the city and have little to no space it’s hard to find a place to actually hang my clothes  to air-dry but it’s possible if you love your active wear as much as I do. Just get creative. 🙂

 

Do you have other tips for taking care of your activewear and making it last? Let me know in the comments!

 

Workout Equipment You Can’t Travel Without

So often we get into a fitness routine and then right when we notice some changes and feeling strong everything seems to go out the window because a mandatory work trip pops up and we don’t workout for a week and struggle to get back into it when we return. This is so common, whether we are traveling for work or for fun. To help you stay on track I’ve picked out 5 lightweight and compact workout essentials that are perfect to throw in your suitcase and take on the road. It’s recommended that you work out at least 10 minutes a day to stay healthy, so bringing these items you can fit in a workout no matter where you are!

 

1. Resistance Bands
These bands are very lightweight and compact you can basically cram them anywhere, without sacrificing shoe space. Resistance bands offer a variety of tension to help you burn fat and tone your whole body. You can easily turn any room into a full gym with these bad boys!

 

 

2. Jump Rope
You can get an amazing cardio workout with any old jump rope. They take up very little space and are perfect for when your hotel doesn’t have any cardio machines or it’s raining outside. Plus I feel like their is something nostalgic about jumping rope. If you want to “jump” your game up a notch tho check out a weighted jump rope, it perfect if you’re looking to get a little extra arm workout. However, keep in mind it’s weighted so don’t over pack!

 

3. Gliders
I probably have clients request gliders in class at least once a week. Gilders have a way of making you love and hate them all at the same time. These are super easy to travel with as they are just a flat circle, you can also cheat and just use a face towel from the hotel. The gliders easily slide on the floor to create more instability for your workout. If you’re creative you can workout your entire body with these little circles.

 

4. Magic Circle
Take your Pilates routine everywhere you go. The magic circle helps target your muscles in your upper and lower body with a little extra resistance to up the intensity. It is also the perfect size to toss into your luggage.

 

5. Suspension Training
I’m sure you’ve heard of TRX, that style of exercise is called suspension training. All you need is a sturdy door frame to attached your equipment to and you’re all set. With these straps you can bring your workout to a whole new “angle”. You will be using your body weight while changing the angle your body is typically in for common exercises like squats and push-ups to challenge your stability and even range of motion.

 

Now that you know what to bring, you just need to remember to pack them. If you have any pieces of equipment that you love to bring with you while traveling let me know.

Not sure how to use these items? I will be posting work outs for you to use while traveling. Here is my recent 3 move glider workout.

Quick Full Body Glider Workout

I know sometimes getting into your favorite class just isn’t in the cards. Maybe you had a meeting run late, family emergency or you’re traveling. Well I’m giving you 3 moves you basically can do anywhere, all you need are two gilders but honestly even hand towels would work.

I encourage you to stay active and try to find a regular exercise routine, even if you’re busy. Working out is incredibly important to your health and happiness in many way! I find that I get very stressed and anxious when I miss a workout. Even a mini 10 minute workout like this helps me stay healthy and mentally balanced in my everyday life. OK, now on to the workout!

Here’s The Glider Workout:

  • Reverse Lunge
  • Plank to Pike
  • Sliding Tricep Pushup

Do three 45-second sets of each move.

Equipment Needed: Can do attitude, gliders/towels and smooth floor.

Learn the moves with these lovely GIF’s I worked so hard on!

1. Reverse Lunge

Begin standing with both feet on the middle of  your gliders. Start to bend into your right leg and slide your left foot back into a low lunge. Then return to starting position.

Then hold your lunge getting as low as you can, begin pulsing down in your standing front leg. Keeping your back leg straight.

Now that you feel the burn try to hold it down a little bit longer. Keep your right leg bend and start sliding your back leg in and out not letting the rest of your body move.

Repeat on the other side.

Make it easier: Remove glider from under the front foot that is not sliding back so you have more stability.

2. Plank to Pike

Start in high plank with both feet in the middle of your gliders. Keeping your shoulders over your wrist, begin engaging your core as you pike hips toward the ceiling, sliding feet in toward hands. Drop your head between your arms and keep your heels lifted. Slide your feet back to return to your position and repeat for 45 seconds.

3. Sliding Tricep Pushup

Start in a kneeling plank position with your gliders under both hands. Start to slide your right hand forward several inches, as your left elbow bends in toward your waist. Press up and away using your left arm and slide your right  arm back in. Continue alternating sides for 45 seconds.

Make it harder: Perform exercise in a high plank position. 

 

I hope you enjoy this workout and get a good sweat!

5 Items To Always Keep In Your Gym Bag

Getting to the gym is already hard work, don’t make it harder on yourself by being unprepared. Since I actually work at a gym I like to think I know what I’m talking about on this topic. I find myself jumping into classes at the spur of the moment all of the time and unfortunately sometimes unprepared. So I’ve created a list of 5 items that I now keep in my gym bag at all times…. I just need to remember my gym bag!

 

Water Bottle

Being hydrated is so essential for working out. I can attest to this from a personal experience a few years back. But now staying hydrated is so easy with this super cute bottle from BKR. I love having the glass bottle because I’m able to see it’s actually clean. Also, the silicone sleeve makes it easier to grip while working out and sweating.

 

Headphones

Since I danced most of my life, I find myself motivated by music a lot. My favorite part about working out in a gym is actually being able to blast my music and just zone out. Honestly if it was socially acceptable to sing while in the gym I totally would. I love using spotify, they have some great playlists for working out but I can also make my own so I stay upbeat and motivated.

 

Protein/Snack Bar

Keeping your body fueled is just as important as staying hydrated. My favorite protein bar to snack on for a workout  is a RXBAR. I love how transparent and honest they are with what is in their bars, you can literally see the ingredients printed on the packaging. Working out requires a lot of energy and if your body isn’t nourished you could get seriously injured. I’ve seen a lot of people nearly pass out from not eating before working out.

 

Face wipes

No one likes to look like a raccoon or worse “the star of a horror film!” Having face wipes is the perfect way to not only protect your skin but also your reputation for when you see that super cute boy running next to you. Make sure you clean off your face before a workout because your pores will absorb all of the dirt and makeup from the day during your workout. Then again after to clear away any sweat, grease or dirt from the equipment you used.

 

Hair Ties

Of course these are needed! I don’t know what it is about hair ties but I can’t ever seem to hold onto them, they are always disappearing or breaking. It’s a seriously struggle as a girl. Also, now with my hair short  I’ve found I wear it down more often and have no way to put my hair up for a workout class. Cue hair sticky to my sweaty forehead and neck…GROSS! I have really liked using these elastic  hair ties as they don’t crease my hair so I can take my hair down after working out and it still looks halfway decent for photos with some friends.

 

What are your gym bag essentials?

How to Bounce Back From That 2pm Slump

I’m sure you all have been there: you have an uber-productive morning, knocking out your to do list, and fighting the urge to scroll through Instagram…..Then the clock strikes two and all you want to do is throw on some pajamas, hop into bed and snuggle your pup. During this time your energy is gone, and you’re having trouble doing routine things and just keeping your eye open.

You’re not alone, it’s completely normal to feel tired once the afternoon hits. Around this time your body starts to produce melatonin and reduce your cortisol as a way for your body to start slowing down and preparing for bed. Especially since some people have been up already for 7-9 hours, the sleepy feeling could just be your natural reaction by your internal body clock.  However I’ve put together a few simple tricks to help you fight that afternoon fatigue.

1.Work Out
I’m sure you guessed I would bring up working out…After all that’s the main focus of my blog. Start taking a midday trip to the gym or your favorite studio. Doing some light aerobic exercise can help boost productivity, as well as fend off that sleepy feeling. Even if you’re not able to step away for a 30-60 minute workout, at least get up and take a walk. Getting your body moving and blood pumping, is great at helping to improve mental clarity and creativity.

2.Healthy Eating Habits

Make sure you’re always eating a well balanced and nutritious meal for breakfast. This is one of the most important meals of the day and skipping this could be the cause of your 2pm crash! Also, eating high protein lunches is a great way to keep your energy levels up. If you’re someone who tends to grab for the chocolate as a “pick me up”…DROP IT and grab a healthier option like nuts, hard boiled eggs or even a yogurt. The sugar will only make you more drowsy after your sugar crash, and possible feel guilty. 

3.Get enough sleep or take a nap

Oona girl taking her midday nap

I don’t joke around when it comes to sleep! Sleep is a big part of having enough energy throughout the day. If you tend to have a hard time falling asleep, try making a bedtime routine so your body knows it’s bed time. Some days you may not get your full 6-8 hours, maybe your roommate came home at 2am and decided to bring the party into your living room, or maybe some crazy person was wandering the street yelling(gotta love SF). If this is the case, find some time during your day to take a 20 minute power nap. Just by taking a little snooze you can boost your alertness and productivity immensely.

4.Hydrate

Even slight dehydration can cause you to feel sleepy, sluggish and dizzy. NOT WORTH IT. Drink your water! When you’re tired it is so tempting to grab a coffee or soda, but it’s not going to help you if you’re dehydrated. Keep a bottle at your desk and try to drink your water consistently throughout the day, it will help you power through those midday slumps.

5. Silent Disco

Music can help boost your mood and make you feel more energized, especially when your favorite song comes one. Just try to avoid having a dance party at your desk. Put some headphone on and get lost in the beat.

 

I hope these 5 tips help you beat your 2pm slump.

Fashionable Fitness Trackers You’ll Never Take Off

Say goodbye to your bulky, unappealing black plastic smartwatches and HELLO to sleek, stylish and 18k gold! You no longer have to sacrifice your fashion for your health. These 7 fitness trackers will help you stay on top of your daily goals this summer.

Tory Burch X Fitbit
This super chic leather double wrap design from Tory Burch for Fitbit, is perfect for your evening outs. You get all the benefits of the Fitbit Flex hidden by the sleek maze that’s Tory Burch signature. Track your steps taken, distance covered, calories burned—even how much you’ve slept, while not losing any street cred….
This gorgeous gold bangle is able to track your fitness activity, send vibration notifications from your phone, and even alert the police if you’re in trouble. The bracelets distress messaging sends your location to a list of preset emergency contacts.
Misfit Ray
One of the most versatile and stylish wearable trackers. Have the freedom of tracking Running, Swimming, Cycling, Yoga, Tennis, and even Dancing while wearing this as a bracelet or necklace. With this sleek design no one will even know that is can do all of that!
Ringly Aries Activity Tracker & Smart Ring
The best blend of fashion and fitness. You can get a wearable ring or bracelet that matches any outfit in 18k gold with emeralds, sapphires or obsidian. You can get discreet notifications with different vibrations. This Ringly ring accurately tracks activity, steps taken and calories burned.

Jawbone UP3 
This super chic fitness tracker can monitor your sleep patterns, Calories burned, heart rate and or your step during a night out on the town. With this piece you also won’t need your wallet, American Express card holders can link their account to this bracelet and charge that morning after macchiato with a simple swipe

This sleek Michael Kors design features crystal accents and a shining engraved face. Keep your health on track and look great while doing it. Get this step and sleep tracker, in gold, silver or rose-gold.

Designed specifically for women The Leaf tracks stress levels, steps, calories burned, sleep and menstrual cycles. This will be the only piece of techwear you’ll ever need to get an overall view on your health physically  and mentally.