Friday, July 1, 2016

vital proteins collagen supplement: a product review

disclosure: i was provided complimentary samples of vital proteins collagen supplements in exchange for this review, but all opinions are my own.

so earlier this week, i shared a few ways i stay healthy, and i mentioned that i take collagen supplements. collagen is a really interesting thing to introduce to your diet. there are so many benefits to adding more of it to your life.

  • it helps maintain skin elasticity
  • improves circulation in your blood vessels
  • it can help diminish wrinkles and fine lines
  • plus it's good for your hair, nails and skin
basically, it's a great thing to get more of. so when the folks of vital proteins asked me if i wanted to try out their collagen peptides and collagen beauty greens, i was ALL OVER THAT. these are both powders that can be mixed into water or a smoothie, similar to a protein powder. i tried both on their own with water to start, and while the beauty greens is flavored coconut vanilla, i just didn't like the taste of it. but when i mixed it into an almond milk smoothie with a few other ingredients, it was much easier for me to get down. since i don't make a smoothie every morning, i figure i'll continue to use it as a once a week add-in to my diet.

the collagen peptides, on the other hand, are flavorless. so mixed with regular water, it actually tasted pretty good on its own. you can definitely tell there's something in your water, but it's nothing bad. just make sure you mix it well, so there are no lumps!

now for my skin! i take good care of my skin in general and i do try to drink 80 ounces of water to ensure my skin has the right amount of moisture, so i wasn't sure if drinking these supplements would really do anything for me.

after about a month of drinking these supplements regularly, i've noticed that my skin is definitely glowing a little more and has definitely smoothed out a bit. i'm sure with prolonged use, i'll see more (and better!) results.

tldr; this stuff is easy to incorporate into your daily life, and helps your skin. so why wouldn't you try it?

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

on healthy living

it's no secret i love living a healthy life. i love exercising and treating my body well (and yes, that does include indulging in pizza and cake when i want). everything in moderation. there are tons of ways to be healthy. for me, it's fitting in spinning classes at b/spoke and running whenever i get the chance. i love being active and sweating. plus, it's good for your mental health. aka sometimes i shed a few tears on the bike. whatever.

on top of that, i do my best to drink 80 ounces of water each day. we all should be drinking more water, right? but why? it's great for your skin, for one. if your skin is super dry, you can treat it with a lot of oils and creams, but you can also treat it from the inside by drinking more water. and we already know oily skin is generally dehydrated skin that's overcompensating for being dehydrated. another solution to the problem? drink some water! and it's good for our insides, because our bodies are mostly made of water. so, ya know, give it some of the good stuff.

the last thing i do to keep myself healthy? i take a probiotic and drink a collagen supplement each day (more on that later this week). you can definitely get a lot of nutrients through eating, but it can be really difficult to get all the nutrients you need. vitamins definitely shouldn't replace finding healthy food options, but they're a great way to supplement your overall well-being.

the cool people over at cotopaxi created this cool infographic with tons of ideas to lead a healthier life. cotopaxi encourages its customers to get outside, stay active and do something good each day, which i can definitely get behind. plus, they donate a percentage of the sales from their hiking backpacks to organizations that support global health initiatives. plus they look real cool.
it's important to stay healthy, especially when we're on the go so often. what do you do to stay healthy?

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

on sadness

it's been a really tough few weeks here. i don't mean personally, but i do mean personally. with all the things currently happening in america, it's hard to not feel like there's a weight sitting on my shoulders. that we're not doing enough. that things are bleak.

it feels all too much. with everything that's happening in regard to sexual assault and brock turner and people denying that rape culture exists, my heart is so heavy. it feels so futile to try to champion the end of rape culture when i write something like this on facebook:

"Rape culture is real and it's present and if you refuse to acknowledge it, you're perpetuating it. I shouldn't constantly be on high alert with my keys prepared like a dagger when I walk around at night. I shouldn't have had to take self-defense classes as an 18-year-old if men weren't also being educated on how to NOT sexually assault their peers. The answer isn't addressing binge drinking on campuses (that's something different entirely). It's about teaching our youth to respect women and treat them as human beings at ALL times."

and someone (a woman!) comments back that they don't agree that rape culture is a thing. mostly because they don't understand, but my GOD it pains my soul. and it leaves me wondering, what's the point? why do i spend the time trying to educate people if they don't want to see the truth?

and then more senseless gun crimes. to big senseless gun crimes. to the biggest mass shooting in US history. and yet, i see all over my facebook feed and twitter timeline that we don't have a gun control problem in this country. that it's this and it's that and let's blame this person and that person and HOW ABOUT WE ALL JUST TAKE SOME BLAME. some blame that we've allowed ourselves to continue living in a culture that allows so much hate. that allows easy access to firearms. that keeps its activism to a few facebook statuses and tweets asking for prayers.

it's enough to just break a girl. it wasn't that long ago that i wrote this post, and everything i said then stands now. let's stop praying for it to end, and actually doing something. call someone. write someone. do something nice for someone. anything.

i'm tired of being sad. and i hope you are too. and i hope together we do something to end this sadness.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

spin less, R/DE more

so i've felt like a little bit of a fraud for a while now. i keep sharing all these things i like to do in boston and i work for two local businesses, but i was constantly going to a spin studio that was a big franchise and not tied to anything boston. i felt like such a liar! a phony! and i liked so many studios in boston, but i never felt super connected to any of them. but that changed recently when i discovered b/spoke studios. walking into b/spoke and taking classes felt like going home.
so when the studio put out a call looking for ambassadors, i threw my hat in the ring because i figured it was worth a shot. and much to my surprise, they liked me enough to offer me a spot! i'm super jazzed to be among the first brand ambassadors for b/spoke!

what does all this mean? well first and foremost, it means a cool discount for you. if you're new to the studio, or haven't visited in a while, drop GUESTOFBYER as a discount code and you'll get 25% off your class. and i'm hoping to do a lot of cool events, which i'll obviously keep you all in the loop about. first and foremost? bones 'n beats on sunday, june 12! book a ride, and a portion of the proceeds will go toward save a dog, inc. added bonus! you'll get to meet some nice pups!

i'm super excited to represent such an amazing company and share so much of it with you all!

Monday, June 6, 2016

race recap: newport 10 miler 2016

last year was my first year tackling a 10-mile race, and this year i came back with a plan. guys. i think i've found my new favorite distance and race.

i love newport, rhode island. it's such a beautiful place, with so much to do, and it's beautiful to run through. this year, i trained a lot smarter for my run. i worked on strength training and speed work. i think running another distance race just six weeks after running the marathon was a little dumb, but also it forced me not to turn into a total sloth.

sunday was foggy and humid, with temps in the low 60s. the temperature was great, but the humidity was tough. i felt sticky at the start, but chilly from the breeze. but hey, i'll take it over super hot temps. this year they introduced waves, which was great because i could seed myself higher and not spend the first few miles zipping in and out of everyone.

i had been running my training runs around a 9-minute mile, so i was aiming for somewhere between a 1:30 and a 1:35 finish. i went out a little conservatively, but held steady around a 9:10-minute mile for the first few miles. i slipped around the middle of the race thanks to some tough hills and a very very long stretch of just flat (though right by the mansions so that was a nice distraction).

i forgot a whole lot of the course, which was a blessing and a curse. it was nice to revisit the scenery and see the water and all the mansions. but i also forgot about a series of hills in the last two miles soooo that was great. but i still managed to run my fastest two miles right at the end, and cruised over the finish line at 1:31:49.
a few notes on this time. 1) i felt really strong, and that was a pretty amazing feeling. when i crossed the finish line, i didn't feel like i needed to curl up in a ball and die. 2) i never thought i had this sort of time in me. i've always been such a slow runner, and finishing a race in the top third of my gender and age group is prettttty cool. 3) i was super excited to rep the awesome boston spin studio b/spoke throughout the weekend.

i've got some more stuff to share about b/spoke tomorrow though! but in short: great race, awesome time, amazing weekend.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

things to do in boston: lululemon's yogathon

did you know june 5 is national cancer survivor's day? i'm so so lucky to know so many beautiful survivors, and it's so amazing that there's a whole day devoted to celebrating them. and if you happen to be looking for something to do this weekend, why not do something good for people and your body all at the same time?

the beautiful lululemon at the street (duh my favorite place ever) is hosting a 12-hour yogathon this sunday in honor of this amazing day. to register, all you'll need to do is make a donation of any amount to bodhi & mind yoga, which offers free one-on-one yoga and meditation practice to women battling breast cancer, and triyoga boston, a non-profit organization offering therapeutic yoga classes. they've set up an eventbrite page to make donating easy!

the best part? you can go to as many classes as you want throughout the day! so if you want to hit up hip hop yoga at noon, get some brunch and shop around, then you can still do a vinyasa flow later in the afternoon. if i weren't going to be down in newport running the 10-miler, i'd be here.

here's the full list of classes (i can't recommend a class with jess ray or cara gilman enough! they're both amazing):

Brahmi Gold-Bernstein and Lorrie Jacobsohn​ ​(TriYoga Boston)
​Yoga for Cancer​
8:00am-9:30am
This class will help increase mental focus, release stress, reduce fatigue, improve sleep and mood, and leave you feeling rejuvenated​. ​It is appropriate for those in treatment or recovery, caregivers, yoga teachers and yoga therapists.

Jess Ray (YogaWorks) 
9:00am-9:50am
​This class blends movement with music to create a unique experience. The innovative sequencing is designed to build strength and flexibility.

Dawn Keighley (Coolidge Corner Yoga) 
​Yoga for All!
10:00am-10:50a
​This class is appropriate for all ages. Explore your inner child while the teachers offer community building activities, yoga games, and a sweet song meditation.​ ​

DJ Arnold (Bodhi & Mind Yoga) 
11:00am-11:50am
​This floor-based, slow-flow class​ is​ designed for students of all levels. Whether you are new to yoga or a seasoned practitioner, this mindful flow will provide an opportunity to explore new facets of your practice.

Meghan Rozanski (YogaWorks)
​Hip Hop Yoga
12:00pm-12:50pm
​This class is an energizing, sweaty flow enhanced by the beats of artists like ​BeyoncĂ©, Nicki Minaj and Justin Timberlake​.​

Lauren Sozio (Core Power Yoga)
1:00pm-1:50pm
​This class combines vinyasa flow and Bikram postures t​o​ build strength and endurance, and work your body from the inside out.

Johnathon Holmes (Coolidge Corner Yoga) 
2:00pm-2:50pm
​This class combines creative sequencing, precise alignment and a little sweat​. Y​​ou'll leave this class with an alert mind and an open heart.

​Tracy Affonso (Bodhi & Mind Yoga, Stil Studio​,​ ​+​ Waltham Yoga) 
​Vinyasa Flow​
3:00pm-3:50p​m
​This class is a heat-building vinyasa flow that will leave you feeling balanced, peaceful, and content.

Leslie Doyle (YogaWorks) 
4:00pm-4:50pm
​This class features a challenging and creative vinyasa sequence to help calm the mind and create some space in the body​ for energy and restoration.

Leah Croteau (Inner Strength, Healthworks​,​ ​+​ Prana) 
5:00pm-5:50pm
​This class features a power​-​flow set to music that'll move you from the outside-in​.​

Brittney Burgess (Black Crow Yoga​ +​ Lexington Power Yoga) 
​Baptiste Yoga
​6:00pm-6:50pm
​This ​energetic, playful, and powerful class is designed to awaken your mind and body​ and discover what is possible within every breath​​.​

Cara Gilman (YogaWorks + JP Centre Yoga)
​All-Levels Vinyasa​
7:00pm-7:50pm
This all levels vinyasa class is set to live music and will allow you to foster a deeper connection within yourself and the incredible community around you.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

i made a cookbook (sort of)

so i've been a little busy lately. that actually is the understatement of the century, but whatever. many months ago, i told my team it might be kind of really cool if we made a cookbook. but not a regular cookbook. a blogger cookbook. with submitted recipes and blogger highlights and beautiful photos. ALL THE THINGS.
so my team was like "cool, go ahead," and i was like, "hahahahaha how?" and well i bumbled around but i figured it out and it's HERE! my team helped me so much, and without them there wouldn't be a book. i'm so lucky to work with an incredible group who is willing to put up with me and my crazy ideas. i'm so excited and humbled and AHHHHH! thanks for putting up with me and my radio silence and everything.

i'd be eternally grateful if you visited and downloaded and helped me spread the word. you guys are the best.