Summer Workout Gear

Since I never grew up with official seasons, they kind of confuse me. 

When it’s summer, I don’t want to spend a ton on summer clothes, since fall will be here soon. And then I remember it’s technically summer here in AZ 3/4 of the year. 

Flowers

I have a hard time committing to trends (unless it’s a year later and the trend is still hanging around). Current example: neon. I read about the neon trend in a magazine about 2 years ago, had a good laugh to myself about how ridiculous it was, and now, I like it. It always takes trends a little while to grow on me, especially since I like the see the real-life version instead of the magazine version. AKA cute neon shoes at the gym > magazine girl with 4-ft afro hair wearing piles of neon necklaces and a tutu.

I am excited to get a pair of neon sneakers to wear at work, especially since our uniforms are black and grey: (we can wear whatever sneaks we want, and whatever clothes we want if we’re teaching the class)

Bright shoes

1. Asics Gel Kayano (this is an extremely supportive shoe- I prefer lighter shoes and this one feels a little bulky to me. The good news about Asics is that they make so many different types to provide ideal comfort for your stride and level of pronation.)

2. Neon Nike Frees (I haven’t tried these but would love to get a pair, as many of my work friends wear these shoes. If you’e going to rock any type of “barefoot” style shoe, I definitely recommend working up to wearing them all day. Try the shoe out for an hour or two each day to build up the muscles in your feet before attempting any workouts with the shoes)

3. Newton running shoes- love the fun orange color!

4. Brooks pure flow (even though I’m as Asics girl, Brooks are my #2 shoe. Love how light they are with the perfect amount of support for my pronation. To find your dream shoe, have your feet and stride checked out at a local running store)

*Of course, Zumba shoes are always bright and fun, too ;)

 Breezy tanks and shorts are my favorite pieces for summer workouts. I used to just wear sofee shorts and a cotton tee, and eventually learned that cotton doesn’t breathe very well for workouts, especially outdoors. Technical fabrics are more expensive, but last longer, and feel 1000x better on long runs or intense cardio seshes. Tip: I never put workout clothes in the dryer if it’s made of a technical fabric. I’m not sure if it’s just our dryer, but it has a tendency to eat our clothes and make them look more worn. This is the only reason why I still have some of my good-quality workout gear a couple of years later, and it still looks ok.

Summer faves

1. Short sleeve tech and run tracker shorts (both from lululemon)- I like the tee version better than the tank (which scoops a little low on me) and adore the shorts. I have a few pairs of the turbo run shorts and they’re my favorites for summer workouts.

Lunge w barbell

2. Champion long and lean running tank and Nike tempo shorts (can be found at most sporting goods stores- sometimes TJ Maxx has them, too). Love the soft fabric of the Target tank and Nike tempo shorts are awesome for running or weightlifting

3. Solow crop leggings and Moving Comfort tank - Moving Comfort makes super-supportive tanks in great fabrics

Headbands!

I love pulling my hair back with a headband for late-night workouts or teaching. (During the day, I do my “save the gym hair” routine which is a post in itself) I’ve kind of avoided it lately, since my hair has been falling out since giving birth and I’m a 27-year old with a receding hairline. Good news is that it’s growing back ;)

Anyway…

Here are some fun headbands: 

Headbands

 

1. Barely there bandana -perfect for Zumba or cardio dance classes

2. Nonslip headband from Etsy

3. GLITTER headbands with an incredible cause. This organization was created by Jessica, a blog reader and friend, as a way to support girls affected with childhood cancer. For every headband purchased, a girl with childhood cancer receives a headband (an accessory they can wear as they lose their hair) and $1 goes to the St. Baldrick’s Foundation to fund life-saving childhood cancer research. I’m excited to order a few glitter bands for myself, and some headbands for Livi, too.

4. The classic lulu slip less headband. They hurt my head after a while, but they do the job.

So tell me, friends: do you fear or embrace the neon? What’s your favorite gym accessory or summer piece of workout gear?

I’m crazy about lulu cool racerback tops. They’re not as pricey as the other options, and are perfect for every type of workout.

Hope you have a wonderful day <3

See ya later on the Fashion page.

xoxo

Gina

Something to read:

75 Easy Stress Busters

Healthy berry desserts

Rock a summer workout despite the heat

4 New Healthy Snacks to Put in Your Gym Bag

4 New Healthy Snacks to Put in Your Gym Bag

Growl...um, did you just hear that? Our stomachs are talking—and they're saying "feed me!" So, here are just four of the new healthy snacks we've been munching on at FBG HQ. Read 'em up and eat 'em up!

New Healthy Snacks: über LÄRABAR

We've long been fans of LÄRABAR—they are delicious and have an ingredient list you simply cannot beat. But the brand's new über line takes everything we love about LÄRABAR and makes it just a little sweeter—and a little saltier. Made with whole foods and nuts, these bars deliver serious taste. With big pieces of fruit and nuts, they're heartier but with that same tastiness you expect from LÄRABAR. We still wish they were a touch higher in protein with just four grams, but we do dig the three grams of fiber and that the sugar is kept below 10 grams. These come in the super tasty flavors of Apple Turnover, Bananas Foster, Cherry Cobbler and Roasted Nut Roll (which cracks us up because we're immature). Apple Turnover was our favorite hands-down, but you really can't go wrong with any of them. With about 200  calories a pop, they're a sizable snack that fills you up and feels like a serious dessert-like treat. (Oh, and if you're a LÄRABAR fan, be sure to check out the new Blueberry and Cappuccino flavors of the usual non-über kind. Delish.)

Study Hall: New vitamin D tests are inaccurate

For Study Hall each week, we sort through the deluge of new medical studies and wordy white papers to bring you one that deserves your attention—in plain, healthy English.

vitamin DVitamin D—that wonderful benefit of summer sunshine—has been shown to stave off osteoporosis, depression, and even cancer. But according to findings presented recently at the Endocrine Society’s annual meeting in Houston, people who are trying to make sure they’re getting enough by having their levels checked may be getting inaccurate information.

The study: Researchers at Loyola University in Chicago wanted to test the accuracy of two new blood tests for vitamin D deficiency. They secured 163 blood samples and performed both new tests on each sample. They then performed a third test on each sample using an established, hands-on, labor-intensive method of measurement (LC/MS), and compared the results.

The results: The new tests overestimated the frequency of vitamin D deficiency in 40 percent of the samples. They showed that 71 and 45 samples were vitamin D deficient, while the established test indicated that just 33 of the samples were. (Given the controversial results, I think we’ll be seeing  peer-review medical study on the topic soon!)

What it means: While blood tests are a great way to figure out a benchmark, they may not tell the whole story when it comes to your vitamin D levels. No matter what the test shows, allow yourself to soak up a limited amount of (unprotected) sun, and eat foods that are rich in or fortified with vitamin D. —Allison Becker

Gaining Confidence at the Gym

gym workouts

I've always been self-conscious at the gym. I know, logically, that everyone is doing his or her own thing and no one is really paying attention to me, but I have a hard time getting over that nagging feeling that someone, somewhere is watching me, critiquing my form and thinking I should be using heavier weights. Or laughing to themselves at me fumbling with a weight machine. And maybe there is one person who doesn't have enough to worry about who is, but why do I let it get in the way of my workouts? As part of my new gym membership, I scored a few personal training sessions. My trainer is awesome, but what she's really done for me is boost my confidence in my fitness knowledge and skills. I mean, I'm not an idiot when it comes to working out. I've taken a zillion classes. I've done a trillion workout DVDs. I've even had a personal trainer for several months. I know the basics; I just don't give myself credit. As Susan puts me through circuits of lunges, squats, deadlifts and push-ups, she has let me know that my form is impeccable. That I clearly know what I'm doing. So it's gone a long way in helping me trust myself when I'm on my own playing with dumbbells, BOSUs and weight machines. But I feel like I still have a ways to go in the confidence department. I still sometimes go blank on what I should do next and feel silly doing lunges all by my lonesome in a corner. But my sweat and sore muscles assure me that I don't necessarily need a trainer to get a great workout. Anyone else feel awkward at the gym? How have you gotten over it? I'm going to continue my journey by following these tips. —Erin