fitness favorites

 I thought it would be fun to do a little update on my fitness routine lately, since I'm always switching it up and trying new things!  I've done a complete 180 from what I was doing last winter, so I'll run through why I changed it up and how it's working for me, plus a little of my favorite fitness gear right now.  

Last fall I had decided to complete Kayla Itsines' "BBG" workouts, which are high intensity plyometric bodyweight circuits that basically kill you in 28 minutes.  They improved my physical capabilities quite a bit - if you'd asked me to drop and do 50 pushups, I would've been able to, no questions asked - but they left me looking a little bit weak and not all that strong, appearance wise.  It wasn't a look I was a fan of, I actually felt that program caused me to lose some of my muscle mass, so I decided to jump into lifting heavy weights after that in the spring, with the help of a trainer.  I was also counting macros (strategically planning my food) in order to lose fat and gain muscle simultaneously. This was probably the most effective workout plan I had ever done, and I really enjoyed it.  However, it was time consuming - meal planning was required, and I had to get to the gym for 1-1.5 hours each day. 

I still have all the muscle I gained during that time, but since I basically did nothing over the summer to work out - and I mean literally nothing - I gained about 10 pounds of body fat back.  This is obviously not something that's the end of the world, but it is something I'd like to fix.   I'm planning to use the same method of counting macros (here's a quick primer on that!) to "cut" a little bit while focusing my workouts mainly on three things: 

Running, specifically trail running.  Yoga & Barre classes (to me, these accomplish the same thing and aren't so much cardio as they are bodyweight strength training) and HIIT classes that involve a mix of cardio and strength circuits.  

My favorite HIIT classes in the St Louis area would have to be Shred415, Fitness Formula, and Orange Theory but there are SO many and I've only scratched the surface with my classpass membership.  I did a previous post on my favorite yoga studios in St Louis, but its really old and definitely needs updating, so stay tuned for a revamp!  I'm also currently trying out every single (yup, EVERY single) barre studio in St Louis and I'll report back on those too!  


My latest favorite exercise would HAVE to be trail running.  In general I always prefer outdoor running,  and this just takes it to an extreme.  Adding in elements of hills, agility navigating rocky or uneven terrain, and weather of all kinds makes it a more full body workout and DEFINITELY incorporates more strength building.  I'm signed up for a 10 week series (10 Saturday mornings at 7:30 am, eek!!) and I am so excited to get started.  There's actually room to sign up for this still if you're interested in trail running!  It's through Fleet Feet in St Louis, and info for that is here.  

If you have any questions about my fitness routine at all, just leave me a comment or email me via the links in my sidebar!  I'd love to hear your thoughts or if there's any one thing you're really into?  Should I try aerial yoga?  Core surf?  A new dance class?  What's getting you moving lately?  


pink coats and velvet shoes

We shot these photos on what I'll probably remember as the last warm day (it hit 80 this day!!) and I know I'll be eating these words in February, but I wasn't sad to see the warmth go.  I'm one of these crazy people who likes to start enjoying the holidays the minute Halloween is over - admittedly not my favorite, Halloween - and I just can't do that when it's 80 degrees outside!  I want holiday Starbucks cups, not t shirts and shorts.  

This outfit is one that I'll definitely be wearing with tights (favorite tights ever right here, by the way) in the coming months, and this little bag has been on repeat - it's by J.Crew, and I love that you can have it monogrammed.  It feels so luxe, but it's actually under $130 (and you can usually find a promo code to make it even less!)  


trunk club active

Trunk Club, a service I've posted about quite a few times before, is now doing activewear trunks!  I work in a casual office, and it's not uncommon for me to hang out at work in some leggings and a pullover to streamline my day from workout to work.  Nordstrom (Trunk Club's partner company) also carries almost all of my favorite activewear brands, so I was excited to try out their service for this purpose!  

Outfit #1 is the classic Zella "Live In" leggings in mauve and this super soft pullover, also by Zella.  I needed a good pullover for running and to-and-from class, and the color of these leggings is so pretty, so I kept both.  

Leggings // Pullover (wearing size small in both)

This outfit wasn't my favorite - the leggings are Alo and they have a sheen to them I didn't find flattering, and the sports bra had no support.  These Nike sneakers are SO cute, and Darrell loved them, but I didn't need them since they're not for running.  

I did keep the jacket, which is another Zella piece, because it was the perfect weight for early winter runs, it's a great neutral navy color and I don't have anything like it.  

For size reference, I'm wearing a small in all of these pieces.  

I really wanted to keep both of these, but you know, budgets.  This Zella long sleeve is great, but I just ordered something similar from J.Crew's new activewear line.  I did keep the capri leggings (by, you guessed it, also Zella!) because I don't have any in this color and I think they'll be fantastic for winter running.   

 I think I mentioned to my stylist that I really loved the Zella Live In leggings, because she also sent them to me in grey.  I have to say, these leggings are the perfect thickness and great to wear with tunics or sweaters (hands down my favorite staple black leggings) but heads up, they don't really stay up when you run - although I haven't tried my new high waisted ones for that yet, so I'll report back!  

These are the Live In Leggings in Grey, and the same pullover as above.  I didn't keep the grey because I was a little more in love with the mauve.

Overall this trunk was a HUGE success!  I kept 4 pieces which is a lot for me!  

I hope this post inspired you to sign up for your own Trunk, this service has been hands down my favorite home shopping service that I've used, I can't say enough good things about it. They even price match if your item goes on sale at Nordstrom!  A few things have changed since I last posted - 
they did institute a $25 service fee for requesting a trunk, which goes towards any purchases you make.  My stylist was VERY conscious of this, and included a 3 pack of running socks she knew I could use either way, if I didn't like anything and just needed to use the credit.  Obviously, that wasn't a problem!  Second, they now give you 5 days instead of 10 to try on and return.  Still a lot longer than the 3 days you get with Stitch Fix, and they still send you between 10-12 items instead of only 5.  Despite these changes happening, I still highly recommend Trunk Club if you're into home shopping subscriptions and if you are always as in need of workout clothing as I am, I hope you'll check this version out!  


a nostalgic lunch and my favorite stl thai

Top (under $15, if you can believe it) // Jeans - my favorite ever, but size down // Bag // Shoes // Hat

We took these photos on a very rare occasion that Darrell and I got to have lunch together, which always seems like a treat due to our crazy schedules.  I'm not sure I've ever talked about our work week schedule; Darrell actually leaves by 5:15 AM each day and commutes an hour to work, where he works out at the company gym and starts his workday at 7am.  I get Claire ready to leave for  school by 7:30 (at the latest) to get to work by 8:30, and then I can work out after work or on my lunch hour if I don't have anything SUPER sweaty planned.  The goal is usually dinner by 7, bed by 8.  It sounds a little crazy, and our days are definitely long, but it's what works for us!  Since he works so far away, lunch dates are usually out of the question, but this particular week he was at a conference for his company in downtown St Louis, which is a relatively short drive from Clayton, MO where I am.  We ate at our favorite Thai place, where we used to eat all the time when we lived downtown in the teeniest little apartment, right before we got married.  If you're ever eating in downtown St Louis and craving a little heat, Sen Thai is a must!  


fall festivities flop

Truth be told, we kind of flubbed the official "blogger trip to Eckert's" this year!  I mean, you've seen enough of these posts, right?  That's good, because these are the only decent photos I have!! We went around 2 pm, when the sun was extremely high, it was a little hot, and Claire was less than cooperative (she may have stolen that apple she's eating in the photo above, who even knows.)  We never got to apple pick because the line for the tractor the fields was so long, and walking around trying to take photos wasn't her favorite.  She was also too young to ride any of the carnival rides Eckert's had set up, but not too young to throw a fit about that.  If you have a recommendation for a smaller, less "theme park like" pumpkin patch in the St Louis area, I'm all ears!  I'm just not sure they're working out for us anymore, especially at this age.  I want to eat apple cider donuts, not feel like I'm at Six Flags with a too short rider all day long!  
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