Three Pink Things I Am Obsessed With For October

If you haven’t been able to tell, I am obsessed with PINK! It’s my absolute favorite color, because it’s the best color! Duh! Needless to say I love October because it all about two of my favorite things! Boobies and Pink!!

Yes, I know there are about 1,000,000 other ways to support Breast Cancer Research and Breast Cancer Awareness Month is about soooooo much more then just everything be recolored to the best color in the world. Check out the National Breast Cancer Foundation for more ideas and ways to help! Having said that I’m still gonna look for all of the super awesome Pink stuff this month that donates money to Breast Cancer Foundations!!

First up is the 24/7 Bra from ThirdLove

Pink Bra

ThirdLove will donate 20% of the purchase of any Pink 24/7 Bra!! These are the most comfortable bras in the world, no joke. It’s the only bra that I don’t take off immediately when I get home. I even have a discount code for $10.00 off a purchase of $50.00 or more – TLVIPKVZ10

ANDDDDDD they are even running a contest on Instagram!!  Check it out!!

Next, is the KitchenAid® 2-Speed Hand Blender 

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KitchenAid doesn’t donate based on sales of their pink products. They donate $450,000 or more through their Cook For a Cure programs. Two of the programs are the Pass The Plate program, where you purchase a special plate, register it on their website, and make something delicious and pass it on to a friend. When your friend logs the plate on their website, KitchenAid will donate $5.00 to Susan G. Komen. The Second program is 10,000 Cupcakes where KitchenAid will donate $1.00 for every original picture of a Cupcake you bake and Share on Instagram or Twitter with the hashtags #10000Cupcakes and #donate. Don’t even give me a reason to make cupcakes, cause I will do and eat them all! How AMAZING are those!!!

Finally and my favorite this year is……………. The Ultimate Sandbag!!

Pink Sand Bag

Sandbags are such a great workout tool to use for functional training or “real life training.” Working with sandbags is like working real stuff we pick up every day like puppies, kittens, a bag full of donuts, you know everyday stuff. My absolute favorite part about this Breast Cancer Awareness Special is www.ultimatesandbagtraining.com is taking the normal pick sandbag they sell all year round and giving people a 20% discount (use the code STRENGTH) and will be donating profits to Singleton Moms, a group to help single parents fighting cancer!!

So there you have it! My favorite pink stuff for October!

Have you come across anything amazing? Let me know!! I’ll probably buy it!

Kristen xo

How I Feel After a Leg Day in Memes and Gifs

This week I had an amazing leg day. With all of the CIZE’ing and teaching I haven’t been hitting the weight room as much as I like but with my wedding coming up I am now making it a priority again!

I love the burn in your muscles after a great weights workout but I always forget how hard it is to live with DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness). The short explanation of the DOMS is tiny micro tears in your muscles that cause stiff joints, swelling in the muscles,  a reduction in range of motion, temporary reduction in strength and soreness (duh). Don’t worry these micro tears are not a bad thing! They can actually make your muscles denser, bigger and stronger! So basically a sore booty is a growing booty! YEAH!!

BUT this is what it feels like!!

When you leave the gym after your EPIC workout.

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When you are getting ready for bed

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When you wake up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom

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When it’s actually time to get out of bed

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You get to work and the elevator is broken so you have to take the stairs

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When you need your second cup of coffee from the office kitchen

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Basically any time you have to get up from your desk

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When anyone touches you

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When your Sig. Other asks if you want to go to the gym

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Finally when you make it into bed

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So I’m gonna rock on and keep telling my friends that my walk is just Swag and not that every time I take a step it feels like I’m getting stabbed in the hamstrings.

Kristen xox

Summer Cocktails – Paleo and Organic

I like to get my relax on and enjoy a few adult bevies by the pool every now and then. One thing I’ve noticed recently is that once you start putting good stuff in your body, you feel really bad when you put in bad stuff. I’m not talking about emotionally, although that can happen too, but I’m talking about physically.

Now and days I feel like I can’t drink like I did when I was younger – maybe it’s just that I am just getting older better with age or maybe it’s because I don’t eat an entire pizza before drinking anymore. Whatever the reason, I wanted to find a way to enjoy a mixed drink and not get the sugar/alcohol shakes in the morning. So I came across two awesome summer mixers that are super tasty, low in calories, organic, Paleo, gluten free, vegan and just overall amazing. Over the weekend I tested out these two new cocktails!!

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Jalagreeno 2.0 Paleo-ish Margarita

What you need:

Jalagreeno 2.0 from Project Juice
100% Aqave Tequlia – I used Camarena

Ok, before anyone flips out on me about Paleo stuff, I understand that there is some debate on weather or not Tequila is Paleo. It’s derived from plants with no added sugars (as long as it is 100% Agave), gluten free and low-carb. So for all intents and purposes, if I’m Paleo and am going to drink, this is my jam.

I like my Margs frozen but for health reasons I do not own a margarita machine, but I do own an ice tray. I froze a full tray of Jalagreeno 2.0 and got out my magic bullet (best purchase of my life). 4 mixer cubes and 1.5 oz of Tequila is perfect for a single serving and easy enough to make again when you are ready for number two.

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Organic Watermelon Berry Martini 

What you need:

Watermelon Berry mixer from Project Juice
Organic vodka – I love Prairie Vodka

This is possibly the easiest drink to make ever. Pour 2 oz of Vodka and 2 oz of Watermelon Berry in shaker with Ice. Shake it up and pour. The hard part is drinking more then two and still being able to walk.

The good news is that you can make a ton of drinks with these bottles of mixer. Bad news, you have to drink it all with in 24 hours of opening the bottle because there are no preservatives in them (hidden good news). Good news, you can freeze  whatever is left over. So there really is no bad news.

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Please drink responsible and don’t drink and drive!

Here are the nutritional fact on each mixer for a 4 oz Serving:

Jalagreeno 2.0
Calories 28
Total Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0g
Sodium 4mg
Total Carbohydrate 5g
-Sugars 4g

Watermelon Berry
Calories 38
Total Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0g
Sodium 12mg
Total Carbohydrate 9g
-Sugars 7g

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Totally acceptable beach drink!

I do partner with Project Juice for run club and enjoy a delicious juice from them from time to time. However, this post was not sponsored by Project Juice. It was sponsored by me and I just really really love their stuff! PS. They ship their juices if you don’t live in the bay area. If you called and asked nicely I bet they would ship the mixers for you! Just Sayin’

Kristen xox

Two Instructor Life Hacks!

Ok… so these are not just for instructors – anyone can use them! But I use them mainly for my group fitness life.

1. De-cluter your life

Do you ever feel like you are drowning in instructor Dvd’s?

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I found these handy dandy little Dvd sleeves. They hold two disks, have a section for notes as well as the cover! The way I decided to store my library was, notes in front, then the Dvd’s, and then the cover folded in half in the back. The reason I did this was was so that I could still see the song list on the back of the sleeve. This makes 3 Dvd sets shrink down to the size of one Dvd case.

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I am still constructing my office but this took my DVD collection from an entire book case to just one cube!!

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2. Stretch the life of your workout clothes.

I love to wear black when I exercise but having to wash my stuff all the time tends to fade out my workout gear. Quite often the color fades before the clothes actually wear out. When that happens I like to extend the life of my stuff by performing a little at-home-dye-job.  Sounds easy enough but there are a few things to keep in mind when doing this:

  • Only try this is if the only other option is throwing away your piece of clothing. I wouldn’t try it on a perfectly fine pair of Lulu Yoga pants.
  • Make sure everything on your piece of clothing is black. If there is anything on them that white or a different color, that part can turn to a weird shade of gray.
  • Wear gloves. The dye will turn your hands black!
  • Make sure your sink won’t stain. There is no point in ruining your bathroom for a $40.00 pair of shorts.
  • After you finish, wash your clothes one more time. Black sweat is not natural or cute.

I buy RIT dye from the grocery store for $2.99 a bottle. There are instructions on the bottle but the way I like to use it is in the sink – one piece of clothing at a time. I use hot hot water and an old kitchen spoon to mix it all up. I let it soak for about 45 min, then rinse out all of the dye. Finally, I wash it by itself just to get out any excess dye.

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If it doesn’t work then I am am only out $2.99 and then I go buy new shorts, because obviously I need them. DUH!

Kristen xox

CIZE LIVE is here, FREE Sneak Peek on July 9th!!

You may or may not have heard that there is a new group fitness class that is coming out from Beachbody Live called CIZE LIVE. What is CIZE LIVE?


Here is a little peek of me CIZEing it up in my back yard!

CIZE LIVE is a dance class for everyone. It is a great workout and makes people feel amazing… like the hottest, baddest, backup dancer on the planet! It’s about getting lost in the music and letting go of the world around you.

Here’s how it works. The full class starts with a warm up; a few dance moves and some stretches.  After the warm up is the breakdown! That is bulk of the class and breaks down all of the moves, putting them together for a 30 second combination.  Then the magic happens. Then it is time to CIZE it up!! Time to dance your heart out!! Not only does it make you feel great but it cranks up your heart rate like crazy! After the show, there is a cool down and a core section.

I know that I might be a little biased but this is the most fun I have had in a class in a long long time! And more importantly, when I’m done I’m also covered in sweat!!!

  • Length: 60 min classes
  • Equipment: None
  • What to wear: Tights, a comfy top, and funky shoes
  • Difficulty level: 5… but you are going to sweat your butt off!
  • Pros: Awesome workout without feeling like a workout at all.

For more information you can go directly to cizelive.com or comment below with any questions!! You should also come and try it out with me on July 9th in San Francisco…for FREE!!!

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For those you that are interested in becoming instructors, I have an instructor training in San Francisco on August 16th. This is open for registration on cizelive.com – but hurry!! – this is one of the first certification classes in the Bay Area and is limited to 40 people!!!  Email me with any questions at sparklespandex@gmail.com

Kristen xo

How To Run Faster

Here is a question I get allllllllllllll the time!! Kristen, how can I run faster? Oh and yeah, I know I look crazy in that picture! That’s how  you feel after at the end of a half marathon.

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First let me say, I am not a certified running coach, I am a fitness professional but not in running. I was an assistant cross country coach for like a season, I ran cross country and track in high school, I run a bunch of races but I am not a certified running coach so this is all based on my opinion and experience.

So now how to run faster! The only way I know to actually get faster at running is to run faster. Ha ha, sounds simple and hard at the same time, right. Let me break it down. When I say you have to run faster to get faster, I don’t mean just will yourself to run your normal routs faster then you do on the reg. That sounds kind of daunting especially if you are doing a lot of miles during the week and your runs are long!  Although I have total faith you could do that, there is an easier way.

Track Repeats

I personally believe that track repeats are the easiest/quickest way to speed up your pace. Here is a list of what I like for best for each race length:

5k – 200 meter repeats
Pace – Your one mile pace
Amount – 20 (sounds like a lot and it might take some time to get to 20 but once you do, I’m pretty sure that you’ll be crushing it)

10K  – 400 meter repeats (By far the hardest, but kind of the most rewarding too)
Pace – Your 5k pace
Amount 10-12

Half Marathon  – 800 meter repeats
Pace – Your 10k pace
Amount 6-10

Marathon  – 1600 meter repeats
Pace – Your 10-15 seconds then your desired marathon pace
Amount 4-6

There are a Zillion different variations that you can do with track workouts but I like to keep it simple, zone out, and focus on the work. Chances are that the first time you do these you might not get to the full amount of repeats, that is OK. Start with a few and work up to the full amounts. If you add this to your training, I would be shocked if you didn’t get faster times.

Now you can just do this on the road but I would suggest finding a local track that you can go to. This reduces distraction, makes the distance that much more consistent each time and the terrain will be nice and smooth for you.

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Here is an example of a track workout that I did a few years ago. It was mile repeats. I did three repeats with a mile warm up and cool down. I was training for marathon at this time. I actually ran the repeats a bit to fast, 6:30 pace. That is not anywhere near my desired marathon pace but you get the idea. On a side note, even though I was running my track workouts faster I didn’t hit my time goal that race. Faster isn’t always better, just saying.

I would love to hear what are your favorite speed workouts if you have them!!

Kristen xoxo

PS. I have just updated all of my social media. Click on the links below and just like it OK!

Instagram: @sparklespandex
Twitter: @sparklespandex
Facebook: www.facebook.com/sparklespandex

I’m BACK!!! AND a Free entry to ANY See Jane Run race!!!

Wooooooo whoooooo!!

Hey Guys! I missed you!! There is sooooooooooo much to catch up on!!

Running, CIZE Live, new food stuff,  more exercise and I’m working on a new look for the blog!! What what!!

I know I have been away for a while but to make up for it I one have one free entry to any See Jane Run Race!! There is one next weekend here in the Bay Area! We can get free bubbles together after the race!! BOOM!

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To enter all you have to do is………

-Like my new FB page! (I know it is basically the same as my old one but some technical stuff has changed, don’t worry about just hit like xox)

 facebook.com/SparkleSpandex

OR

Like my Instagram!!

instagram.com/sparklespandex

Or you can do both for extra credit!!

If you already like those share this on your Facebook, Repost on Insta, or Comment below!!  I’ll announce the winner Monday!

Can’t wait to catch up more on all of the exciting thing going on!!

Kristen xoxo

Workout Wednesday – Office workout for sitting at your desk all day

As much as I beg and stomp my feet, it turns out I’m never going to be a stay at home wife……..even though it’s my dream job. Like most people I spend my day behind a desk, slapping a keyboard, not bopping around from workout to workout, drinking juice all day, walking my adorable puppy in my Lulu’s (but a girl can dream can’t she, #lifegoals).

The older I get, I notice more and more that sitting all day is messing with my body and even my workouts. Yes, I do workout a lot but even with all that, I still need extra stuff to counteract 8 hours a day on my tush. Not including the over health issues sitting causes like increased risk of heart disease, slower metabolism, and increased risk of cancer, it really does mess with your muscles and body composition. There is good news though, getting up every hour can help reduce all of that junk. Here are a few exercises that you can do in your office that can help the muscles that get weak from sitting. I promise you wont get too sweaty but I can’t promise your co-workers wont laugh at you.

Upper back and Shoulders

What Happens: When sitting most people relax and slouch in their chair rolling their shoulders forward.
Why it’s bad:  This creates a weak shoulder muscles, poor posture and tight chest muscles.
How to fix it: Back Flys with a resistance band. This builds the back muscles that pull your shoulders back and create great posture.

Glutes

What Happens: When sitting the glutes do NOTHING!
Why it’s bad: This affects stability, getting up and down, a person’s stride and bikini bottoms.
How to fix it: Chair Squats. This strengthens glutes and builds them up to make new jeans fit just right.

Abs

What Happens: When someone slouches in there chair the abs are not engaged and back muscles get tight from supporting the upper body.
Why it’s bad:  This weakens the ab muscles that protect the lower back and tucks hips under creating that flat tummy.
How to fix it: Chair ab leg extensions. This builds the lower abs and inner ab stabilizing muscles

I like to spread them out during the day. Here are two different ways to do that. Every hour get up and do one exercise until failure, rotating through them all during the day is one way. Another way is to do a set amount of each every hour. For example, 15 flys, 15 squats, 15 leg extentions. Whatever why you choose, just make sure to set a timer and get out of that chair.

Bonus: If you can take a walk at lunch and/or sit on a swiss ball at your desk! Every little bit helps!

Kristen xo

Working my Core at Urban Balance Pilates

I recently had the opportunity to try out a one-on-one Pilates session at Urban Balance Pilates. I have only really experienced pilates in yoga/pilates fusion classes, never on it’s own. So when the opportunity came up to try it out I was all for it and plus, I’ve seen it on reality tv shows before, it looks totally easy……..Right.

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Urban Balance Pilates is a beautiful private little studio in the Russian Hill neighborhood of San Francisco. When I walked in I was greeted by an an adorable instructor, Kelly. She made me feel at ease right away. The first thing we did was talk about my medical history, my goals and Kelly also gave me some background about Pilates and her training. I have to admit  was a little intimidated by the equipment but Kelly reassured me that she was going to tell me everything I needed to know.

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We started the workout on the reformer. A reformer is kind of like a big rowing machine that you lay on with ropes and a foot bar. Kelly told me that in classical Pilates there is a certain sequence to the workout that is followed every time. In the warm up, the exercises were pretty basic but with the resistance from the reformer and the slow controlled tempo I started to feel them working my muscles. As we got into the workout even more the exercises became more complex and I definitely had to think about every move before doing it. Even though there were a few exercises I didn’t think I was going to be able to do (like all of the upside down ones), Kelly guided me through them perfectly and pushed me to go a little further than I thought I could.

I have to admit this was not an easy workout. I was challenged from the start and at the end I was drenched in sweat and my muscles were shaking. It was a lot different then I expected. I learned a lot about my own body and where I have some work to do, especially since my core was super sore the next day. It’s a completely different style then the high intensity type of  workouts I am use to but now I’m super excited to explore Pilates even more.

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Sorry the pic is blurry, my hands were shaking!!

Urban Balance Pilates

  • Length: 50 min Sessions
  • Equipment: Reformer, Pilates Cadillac, Pilates Chair, Pilates Barrel
  • Investment: 100-120 for personal sessions, 50-70 for duet sessions 
  • What to wear: Tank, Capris or Tights and no shoes
  • Difficulty level: 6 Because of the complexity of some of the moves
  • Pros: 1 on 1 sessions tailored to your fitness level, building strength and body awareness
  • Extras: Urban Balance Pilates also offers nutrition coaching for 100

I absolutely LOVED my time at Urban Balance Pilates and would recommend any one to start their Pilates journey here. For more information Visit Urban Balance Pilates on Facebook

***Please note: I am an ambassador for Fit Approach and Sweat Pink, and that’s how I received an awesome session at Urban Balance Pilates. I never give an opinion that is not my own, and I have a lot of them to share (just ask). ***  

Kristen xo

Foodie Friday – MealEnders

I love food, (LOVE IT!!!), but the struggle between staying healthy, eating for activity, keeping my butt from spilling out of my jeans and eating what I want is real!!! My biggest struggle is snacking and binge eating when I get home from work.

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I generally have pretty good will power but when I am tired all of that goes out the widow. There is actually a chemical reason that this happens. When you are tired and sleep deprived (like most of us are these days) the levels of a little hormone called Ghrelin, that control hunger, go up and another guy called Peptide YY, that make you feel full, go down. This is basically telling your body that you are starving and never full. Great for hot dog eating competitions not so good for bikini season.

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Over the past few weeks I’ve had the chance to try a brand spanking new product out of San Francisco that helps with this exact issue I’ve been struggling all my life!

Welcome to the Wonderful World of MealEnders!

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What’s a MealEnder?

I’m so glad you asked. MealEnders are “Signaling Lozenges” designed to help you stop eating when you are not hungry and to help you end a meal when you know you should be done.

How does it work?

Remember that Peptide YY I was just talking about? The trouble with that guy is that once you start eating it takes 20 min for it to kick in and tell your body it’s full. This leaves a 20 min window to keep stuffing your face. (Do you know know how much Pizza I can put down in 20 min? A lot!) This little gem pretty basically treats your mouth with a sweat “Reward Layer” and then reboots your taste buds with the “Inner Core’s Active-Taste Layer” The core is really where the magic happens. It produces a tingling sensation on your tongue working your trigeminal nerve making your brain forget that you wanted to taste that other half of the pizza and giving your body time to realize it’s full. Genius, right!

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After trying them for the past few weeks I am totally sold on these bad boys. They taste great and really do work. It has not only stopped me from overeating at meals but I have also used them when I get the board or tired munchies and they worked then as well. My favorite flavor is citrus.

Here are the Deets on MealEnders:

Who are they good for? Everyone one! They are gluten free, low fat, Kosher, have no drugs, or herbs and no high fructose syrup.

What are the flavors? They come in four different flavors, Chocolate Mint, Cinnamon, Citrus and Mocha.

Where do you get them? Right now they are sold exclusively on MealEnders website, www.mealenders.com

Best news yet!!! I have a giveaway for them!!!!! Four WHOLE bags! One in each flavor! Click the link below for ways to enter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

P.S. there is a secret way to get another entry on my Instagram! @therealkristenvz

***Please note: I am an ambassador for Fit Approach and Sweat Pink, and that’s how I received these sweet MealEnders products to try and giveaway. I never give an opinion that is not my own, and I have a lot of them to share (just ask). ***