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!  


boho fall

This look is unfortunately quite old, because in case you haven't noticed I've been majorly slacking on the blogging front!  Fortunately, I am keeping up with Instagram (you can follow me here!) because it just seems a little easier sometimes.  To be honest, we've been crazy busy lately - literally, my struggle right now is finding 3 days at home during which to potty train my child.  Her teacher nagged me about it AGAIN today, oops.  It might come down to using PTO to just DO IT.  I'm hoping not, but honestly who knows.   

The bad news is, I can't find this dress online anymore, but it is Who What Wear for Target in case you want to scope out the in store situation, and it is definitely one of my fall favorites.  That whole line in general has continued to impress me: current favorites include this striped sleeveless turtleneck, this GORGEOUS faux leather trimmed dress, and this faux suede olive moto jacket.  

Happy Monday, I hope you have a fab week!  


fall ready with a 70s vibe

Happy Monday!  I'm back today with a mash up of some of my very favorite pieces for fall.  Gimme leopard, cognag, plaid, and a button up scarf and I am h-a-p-p-y!  Although last week we had a warm front in STL, this week we are lucky enough to have temps in the 60s and it feels SO good to bust out my favorite scarves in the morning, including this super soft one from ILYmix.  I am crazy about the warm autumn colors and know it will wear it so much in the coming months.  They have so many cute scarves in stock right now, I'm also crazy about this one and how fun is this hot pink?!  

Happy Monday, I hope you have a great week!  


early fall staples

As much as I wish I could say that autumn has arrived in St Louis already, it really hasn't.  Our A/C is still on, our leaves are still kicking, and much to my husband's dismay, the grass is still green and growing like crazy.  We HAVE been lucky enough to have cooler mornings - sometimes we start in the 50s and end up in the 80s by mid afternoon, so this jeans/tank/jacket combo has been a go to!  

I'm getting major mileage out of the pieces I stocked up on from the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, especially this leather jacket - which looks to be back in stock!! It was gone for quite some time, but word to the wise on sizing - I would size up.  I actually got my usual small, and during the sale unfortunately a medium was nearly impossible to come by.  It works, but I can't say I wouldn't be the teeeeeeeeniest more comfortable in a medium.  

Hope you're having a great week so far!  


deal hunting with goodwill for back to school and more!

A few months ago, Goodwill Industries contacted me about doing a little back to school shopping for Claire in their stores.  It seemed like a natural fit, since I'd been going there for years whenever I felt like doing a little shopping but didn't quite have the budget to fit a random day browsing Anthropologie.  I also had quite a list for Claire, so we decided to take her with - she's very particular about her clothes!  For example, she totally vetoed the pink tutu I'm holding up above.  

What we ended up with - this cute turtleneck and skirt combo - I'll pair it with knee high socks!  We also grabbed two sleepers in her size, because is it just me or are children CONSTANTLY growing out of pajamas?!  

We don't have a Halloween costume nailed down for sure yet, but I mostly picked these up for her to play dress up in!  The quality is pretty nice for the price and she's in a major "princess" phase so extra tutus never hurt!  

She also asked for THIS THING which i vetoed, but I did say yes to a $1 teapot.  

Last but not least - NEVER ever go to Goodwill without perusing the glassware.  Here is the thing, there are about a million people each day inheriting their grandmother's china and crystal and sadly, they often don't have somewhere good to put it.  Or they don't entertain.  Or they own 6 large dogs.  WHATEVER.  Those people are taking those treasures to the Goodwill - and then Anthropologie knocks those vintage treasures off and sells them for approximately $20 a glass.  I don't always score, but it's my most winning category for sure.  This weekend, I hit the jackpot!  Those rose colored coupes (for $1 each,) perfect for champs or even better - sorbet topped with champs - may be my all time favorite find.  

Long story short, when your kids inevitably needs pajamas, school clothes, a Halloween costume, or YOU have a party and are short a few champagne classes, hit up your local Goodwill.  It's like treasure hunting, and I think you'll strike gold :)  

ps - I was provided with shopping vouchers for creating content for this post, but all opinions and thoughts are completely my own!


#bohovibes with zaful

Jacket c/o // Jeans // Tee - this is my favorite tee of all time // Wedges (old, but these are very cute)// Brio Tassel Necklace // Miramar Sunnies

This fun jacket is getting me through the funniest time of year - that moment when you're like "hey, back to school!  September!  Fall decor at Hobby Lobby!" and simultaneously like "wait, it's 95 degrees outside."  In St Louis, we call September summer - our biggest music festival is always the weekend AFTER Labor Day - so we can't really claim to be autumnal yet.  But, since I'm no longer feeling like cutoffs and tank tops, and since I really really want to start burning my Bath & Body Works fall candles - hello, Cider Lane! - we'll compromise, with boho embellished jackets that are made of the thinnest cotton.  

On a side note - I've lately been trying to test out some of the popular Asian fashion sites for you guys, in order to offer solid reviews to go off of.  This jacket in particular is from Zaful, and I'm happy to report that I was really pleasantly surprised by the quality!  The packaging it arrived in was nice, although I highly recommend their express shipping.  You can see more of their pieces styled in real life on their Instagram, and they post coupons all the time here

Next up: Sammydress.com & Rosegal.com - will report back!   


my latest trunk club review

I'm back today with another review of my latest trunk from Trunk Club!  This is a service I had put on pause for the summer, because I hadn't really needed many new clothes for a bit (I tend to be a pre season shopper) but since I know many people are looking to freshen up their wardrobe this time of year, I thought it might be good to remind you about this crazy useful service!  

If you'd like to read my initial review of trunk club, you can find it here!  

This dress is my first and most favorite item from this trunk!  Such a fab color for autumn and really casual/easy to wear.  It's from Free People and was also a really great price point.  

 The great thing about Trunk Club is that they don't charge any styling or shipping fees.  It's completely free to receive your trunk.  You can even schedule your package pickup through the Trunk Club website after you've given your stylist feedback and just set it out for pickup.  With Stitch Fix, you have to drop your package off at a USPS drop point - not a big deal, but less convenient for sure.  I also really appreciate that I don't feel the need to "spend" my styling fee by making sure it goes towards an item in my shipment.  Trunk Club operates on the success of their stylists skill, so you never feel pressured to buy anything as a client.  You are also able to chat with your stylist on the phone or via email before she puts your trunk together, which makes for a more successful experience overall.  

Trunk Club sends you 12-15 pieces per trunk (including shoes and handbags, or jewelry and scarves if you request it) and before your box is shipped you get a "preview."  During this you log on to your account and are able to veto any items you DEFINITELY don't want sent because you don't like them, and your stylist will pick new things.  This greatly ups your chances of success, which I loved because it's very disappointing to get a box with absolutely nothing you like in it!  

This, I didn't love.  It's by Cupcakes & Cashmere (a brand I really like in general) but I have to say that I HATE dresses that require a slip underneath, they're almost never sized correctly and this was no exception.  

This red sweater was really REALLY soft and had a very pretty open back with a contrasting fabric.  It was by NYDJ, a brand I hadn't tried before!  These jeans are black "skinny skinny" jeans from Madewell, which is a label I always love for pants.  They're size 26, which worked for me in these.  

These two t shirts were definitely her trying to fill in my basics wardrobe, but frankly I would've preferred some from the line Lush or BP.  I don't typically spend extra $$$ on t shirts because some lower priced brands do them really well.  That said, this blush tee (Madewell) and white tee (Rag & Bone) would have been great investments if I wore this kind of thing more!  

Another really soft sweater, but I don't love this neckline, and the same goes for the blue one!  

Lastly, this tank from Splendid was an awesome fall layering piece (with cardigans!) and the softest one I've felt.  Moving on to shoes....

These Sam Edelman fringe heels were darling, and his shoes are ALWAYS the most comfortable, but the black was a harsh line on my muscular legs so they went back!  

However, I was totally obsessed with these cognac Free People booties that are so great for transitioning to fall and will still be cute with tights in a couple of months!  Super flattering to the leg, too!  

Great success all around - I highly, highly recommend my Trunk Club stylist and you will get assigned to her if you sign up through this link!  Like I said, there is zero risk involved and since Trunk Club is owned and run by Nordstrom the selections are pretty broad and awesome.  Let me know how you like it on Instagram!  

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