Monthly Archives: April 2014

some wednesday link lovin’

happy hump day! here are some jewels from the world wide web, to pick up your spirits on this rainy Wednesday.

 

– have you been needing the extra push to go the distance with your run? Mindbodygreen reminds you that yes, you CAN do a marathon!

– even if there is no marathon in your future, here’s an interesting little interactive page about the larger impact of running. Very cool.

– but, if you’re running, you should be doing this – a fantastic de-mystification of the foam roller.

stop making these, and get out and sweat…

– mostly so that you can make these. but seriously.

– and also, because apparently you are just a few short workouts away from better skin? Read more about that here.

– um, so this is inspiring.

– maybe some flower-based DIYs will make the rain go away?

– i love greens. i love infographics. this combination is awesome.

– “but I live with an eternal green-grass mindset” – this is beautiful. 

– and finally, strawberry margaritas! Garnish with some basil, and who’s ready for the weekend?

 

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“we should all start to live before we get too old. Fear is stupid. So are regrets.” – Marilyn Monroe

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fast food, done right

One of the biggest excuses I hear people give when they explain why they don’t eat healthier is that they don’t have the time to. And I’ll admit, that’s valid – a whole foods, plant based diet usually does require a lot more thought, preparation, and time than the average American diet. Even though it is absolutely always worth a little extra effort to try to eat clean, and in a way that benefits your body the most, it’s always nice to discover little gems like this “one & done” salad, that make eating clean a possibility even on a tight schedule. I’m sure the idea of baking an array of vegetables in a muffin tin is in no way a unique one, but it was one that was born out of necessity for me – a series of back-to-back completely packed days left me without a clean baking pan, and without the time to clean it, or really do much else in the way of preparing food. So, I opened up my fridge to find anything that could possibly fit into a muffin tin, and baked it all. I also added in a little bit of quinoa, because I keep a large (sealed) bowl of cooked quinoa in my fridge almost all the time, for situations like this, and of course some sauteed kale, because why not? Fortunately, the combination was delicious, even though it is super simple.

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“one & done salad”

ingredients:

1 large brown egg

4 large stalks of asparagus

2 cups of broccoli

1 lemon, or lime, or both

2 large handfuls of kale

1 tbsp olive oil

1/2 cup quinoa

1 tbsp capers

to make:

crack the egg into one of the muffin slots, and add in the veggies to the others (pictured above). Drizzle a little bit of the olive oil on the veggies, and pop in the oven – I baked it at 375, for about 15 minutes. The timing on this one is completely dependent on how runny you like your egg, though – if you give it less time, the egg will be much more yolk-y, and makes for almost a built-in salad dressing… food for thought. While the egg and veggies are baking, turn the stove to medium-high, and sauté the kale in the remaining olive oil, until it’s soft (usually 2-3 minutes). Add everything into a bowl, and if you happen to have cooked quinoa on hand (or are preparing this meal in less of a rush, and have time to actually cook quinoa…), toss that in too. Add in the capers, a dash of sea salt, and the juice from your preferred citrus, and voila! Fast food, done right.

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behind the scenes: Sean the “Run Bum”

this past weekend, I had the insanely awesome, and very spontaneous pleasure of photographing Sean, “Run Bum,” up on the trails of the Blue Ridge Parkway. This dude is seriously intense… and seriously awesome! If you’re looking for some new outdoor/athletic inspiration, we’ve found you a great one. Sean is based out of Atlanta, but travels literally all around the world “in search of the perfect run,” with the mission of having fun, connecting runners, and inspiring people to get active and outdoors… so basically, he spends his life living to the fullest, and elevating everyone he meets to do the same. In addition to seeking out (and crushing) really awesome runs for himself, Sean organizes races and events, and also leads his Run Bum community in clearing and maintaining trails. On top of all this goodness, he’s also a super nice and down-to-earth guy… and he can rock some lululemon!

Check out these pictures from our awesome time hopping around on a mountaintop, please please go read more about this ridiculously inspiring guy, then go join his amazing community, AND FINALLY,  come hang out with him in the showroom TOMORROW (April 24)  for Run Club, and again May 8th for a Run Bum clinic, some crazy awesome stories, and an ice-cold beer. What better way to kick off run season?!

 

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fitness fusion: yoga for runners

in the wonderful world of fitness, there tends to be at least some symbiosis between different activities, for which I am totally grateful. Once you start loving certain things, they all seem to flow together effortlessly, and  maybe in some cases it’s only because you are pursuing these things so wholeheartedly that they cannot help but fuse; but in other cases, the connection is incredibly and undeniably clear (paddleboard yoga, for example). Either way, it makes everything so much more exciting when all of the ways that you love to be active can blend together to make one awesome, incredible life. Someone asked me the other day what my favorite way to sweat was, and my immediate response was “runningbutclimbingandabsolutelyyogaplusnowpaddleboarding.” Definitely all one word.

With that being said, and in honor of yesterday’s Boston Marathon, I wanted to take a moment to explore the fusion between yoga and running by looking at some of the best yoga poses for runners! So if you were one of the incredible 26.2-ers from yesterday, or if you spent your sunny Monday getting in some milage of your own, here are a few great ways to work it all out on your mat:

1. Crescent Lunge – I know this one is always a little bit of a struggle for me, because everything in my legs usually hurts a little bit from running, but stick with this beauty even through the pain, because  it is  truly a wonderful hip, calf, and hamstring stretch.

2. Downward Dog – my post-run paradise. This pose helps to stretch out and strengthen everything in your leg that gets so tight from running, which will actually help prevent common running injuries later on (shin splints, IT band issues, etc.)

3. Pigeon Pose – a lot of the time, runners will suffer from overuse injuries, because of the repetition of one type of movement for a long period of time. If you’re doing this constant motion with tight hip flexors, your body will look to other joints to balance the load, even when they were not meant to do so. SO. If you put in a little extra time on your mat really focusing on opening your hips, it will help train your body to put the pressure where it was meant to be when you’re running, and ultimately lead to a much better run, and much fewer injuries!

4. Pyramid Pose – this is a phenomenal hamstring stretch, which is  such a necessary undertaking for active runners. When your hamstrings are too tight, it changes the angle in which your pelvis tilts, which in turn adds a lot more stress on your back. Well-stretched hamstrings will not only keep your legs flexible, but will help keep your back aligned and strong.

5. Triangle Pose – two words: hamstring. stretch. Get on it.

6. Chair Pose – big ow, especially for runners. I can feel my glutes burn even as I type the words. But such a helpful pose, as it’s working to strengthen not only those leg muscles we need for a solid run, but the core muscles to help us run properly, and therefore avoid injury.

7. Hero Pose – the motion and bending of running puts a lot of stretch and strain on your psoas muscle, which tightens it up and allows for poor posture. Hero pose stretches out your psoas muscle, working to counteract this tightness.

8. Forward Fold – don’t have the time or space for any of these other fancy moves? That’s fine. Sometimes, a simple forward fold is all you need to stretch everything out, and to heal and re-center your body and your breath.

 

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springing into spring juicing

green juice. Juice in general. Cold-pressed, non-pasturized, juice fasting, juice feasting, cleansing, detoxing –  all of it is all the rage right now in the health world, and with good reason. I must admit, I was incredibly skeptical at first, and dragged my feet mightily before jumping on the juicing bandwagon. I heard all the negatives: it’s costly, messy, time consuming, and nowhere close to worth the effort, and I let those convince me that it simply wasn’t worth the time. But oh, how wrong I was. True, my grocery bill may have taken a small jump, and my mornings might require a few extra minutes of preparation and clean up time, but oh man, how incredibly worth the effort these little glasses of freshly pressed vegetable juice are. This afternoon, I found myself (as often happens) lagging in a way that even tea could not fix, so I wandered down to the kitchen and whipped up a quick glass of kale/lemon/cilantro/celery juice (pictured below), and I swear, sipping it was like a shock to my brain, in the best way possible. I felt awake, alert, and layers of cloudiness built up by the day seemed to simply melt away.  Green, lemony heaven.

 

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Now that it’s finally spring (!!!), a season marked by a distinct sense of freshness, it seems like it’s time for an entire system reboot. It’s time for the shaking off of the dreary build ups of winter, both physically and emotionally, and the preparation for rebirth and renewal. Spring cleaning, for the heart, home, and body – and what better way to spring clean your body than by juicing? You don’t have to start drinking gallons of the stuff a day, and you don’t even have to do a juice cleanse. But adding a little bit of cold-pressed vegetable juice to your diet is one of the most amazing ways I can think of to really awaken and renew your body and mind for this season. It’s a great way to get in some concentrated nutrients, and an easy way to add greens and colorful veggies to your diet.

So, for those of you who have never played the juicing game before, I’ve shot a few of my favorite combinations to throw in the juicer, just to give you all some ideas! If these don’t sound quite up your alley, or if you’re already craving more, here are some great resources for juice recipes: rawsome vegan, green kitchen stories, and nutrition stripped.

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1 whole beet + beet greens, 2 lemons, 1 large orange, 1/1.5 apple, and a hefty slice of ginger root. 

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5-7 stalks of celery, 2 large carrots, 1 orange, 1 large lemon, a large chunk of ginger root + grated ginger root and cloves to top.

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4-6 big leaves of kale, 1 lemon, 1 apple, 4 stalks of celery, a large chunk of ginger root.

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on creating newness

One of the biggest challenges with anything constant in life is that, as much as we are always growing and building, we tend to forget the beauty and excitement of newness. This applies to anything – belongings, relationships, and yes, even yoga. I’ve found myself so very guilty of this – I’ll go to a class, and roll my eyes in the back of my head, because it’s the exact same sequence we did last time, or because, hot dang, I am just not in the mood for seventeen rounds of Sun Salutations. Instead of viewing my time on the mat as something new, a space within which to create and develop, I’m frustrated by what is similar and routine. I’m forgetting the very first yoga class I ever attended, where I had to look around every time the teacher spoke to see where the heck I was supposed to be bending and twisting, or the first down-dog I took, which probably would have been more appropriately named “uncomfortable camel.” I’m forgetting the sheer joy I found the first time that I correctly remembered the order of the poses in a Sun Salutation, and how secretly proud I was when I stuck my first side crow. Just because I have a slightly better handle on the poses now, it doesn’t mean that yoga isn’t still new, full of joy, exciting. Yoga, just like life, is exactly what you make of it, and is just as full of that blank, empty space for you to create, build, play, experiment, learn, and grow – constantly. Until the day you die, you are creating, and what you are creating is entirely your choice.

That being said, it’s truly a joy to hear the thoughts of someone who has just started a yoga practice, and to really get excited watching someone you care about experience the fresh new possibilities that come with really learning to live and understand yoga. I have been blessed enough to do that recently, as my dear friend Megan has just started coming to yoga in the past few weeks. It’s been so incredible to see her develop a love for her practice, to watch her in her fresh new wunderunders (!) as she embraces the joys of a Sun A… I’m convinced that there is nothing more wonderful than watching someone step into something that they truly love.

Fortunately for me, and the rest of you, in addition to being a yogi, Megan is also a blogger, and she wrote a really awesome post yesterday on her thoughts about beginning yoga – what led her to that point, and what she’s gleaned from it so far. Immediately after reading it, I asked her if it was something I could share on here – the post is thought-provoking, insightful, and the coolest collection of thoughts and lessons that she’s learned in developing a yoga practice. So, read her incredible post here, soak in the wisdom of trying something new, or as our company’s manifesto so beautifully puts it, “trying one thing a day that scares you,” and take the time, space, and intention to really start creating the life you crave.

Namaste, lovelies.

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weight training: why and how

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with all the classes and cardio we try to jam in to our daily lives, it’s easy to forget about (/ignore) the importance of a good, old-fashioned, sweaty gym sesh… however, in honor of this week’s PN shoot at Green Valley with Kadie, it seemed appropriate to take a moment and highlight the incredible physical benefits of doing time on the weight bench every now and again.So, if you’re one of the many people who hits the gym frequently, but never takes the time to go pump iron, here are a few reasons for why you should maybe reconsider:

1. Intense weight sessions burn calories AND boost up your metabolism, so when lifting hard and heavy, you’re burning calories  at the time, and also putting your body in a position to continuously burn through more later.

2. Additionally, lifting can decrease the natural decline in your metabolism, which generally starts around age 30. So, if you feel like your metabolism is starting to function a little less efficiently than it did when you were 18, some sweaty gym time might just be the cure.

3. BONE STRENGTH – a huge issue for all of us, although one we’re less likely to pay attention to, since it’s not something that shows outwardly… but weight training helps to strengthen your bones and increase bone density, which will significantly decrease your risk of fractures and osteoporosis.

4. Cardiovascular benefits… yes, lifting can count as some cardio. Two birds, one stone. Depending on the weight and intensity, lifting can definitely help get the heart pumping, which has great fitness benefits, but also works to keep your heart, and therefore you, active and healthy.

5. Finally, lifting regularly significantly helps in the reduction of body fat. Obviously, it works to keep you strong and to build muscle, but as that lean muscle mass increases, it turns around and helps your body burn the excess fat. So you’re getting more fit AND more lean… no complaints there, right?

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alright, so now that you’re sold on lifting… how? Here are a few tips for maximally efficient time in the weight room:

1. Lift heavy. If you’re not there yet, that’s fine, work towards it. Ladies, don’t avoid heavy weights for fear of getting “unnecessarily bulky” – one, your body doesn’t have the testosterone levels, or take in the calories needed for that, and two, the amount of tiny tears created in your muscles while lifting heavier weights are actually going to be what work to burn more calories after you’re finished lifting. Check this article out for more information on what you should be lifting. Don’t be afraid to challenge yourself… that’s half the fun!

2. Change it up – we’ve all heard someone say, “oh man, yesterday was shoulder day, and it was rough,” or something along those lines… but the idea of dividing up certain muscle groups for different gym sessions is actually a really helpful one. Even if you don’t go every day, it’s important to focus on working different muscle groups in each workout, so that you get a fully balanced improvement, but also so that you give the muscles you’re working the proper amount of time to grow and recover.

3. Train with something. Fitness buddies are the best buddies – this way, you have someone to encourage and support you, correct you on your form, and maybe go eat ice cream with afterwards (I mean, hey, if your metabolism is already sped up from all your lifting, why not… right?)

4. Finally, here’s a quick breakdown on what exactly a balanced weight training session looks like: start with some strength training, which means a moderate load with moderate repetitions – whatever muscle group you’re working, if you keep it around 8 reps, and with a comfortable (not easy) load, this is going to help you build the strength endurance you’re looking for. After that, if your goal is to build muscle size, you’re going to want to graduate to lots of different workouts for the same muscle group, all at a manageably hard load, but with moderate reps (6-ish). If your goal is not necessarily huge muscles, but more maximum strength, you’ll get there by doing heavy loads and low reps, so find a weight that really, truly challenges you, and lift it for 1-5 reps, with a longer rest period. If you’re still feeling up for some more work after that, aim for just a little bit of power training to balance it all out, which is simply a light-load exercise, performed as quickly as possible. So things like squat jumps, soccer throws, even medicine ball chest presses… these will help you build up speed and power, to balance out all of the muscle work you just did. And, as always, finish up with some yoga moves, to give your wonderful muscles a break and some much-needed love.

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want to read more? Check these out: 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5.

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happy 1 year, lululemon greensboro!

It’s our birthday!!! This past weekend, we celebrated our first year as a showroom in Greensboro, and it was the most incredible time ever. It was truly touching, to see the number of inspiring instructors and guests that came out to celebrate with us, and it was such a beautiful reminder of the importance of community, especially THIS community! It’s so amazing to be here, and we’re loving every moment of it. Cheers to one year, and to many, many more.

An extra special thanks to Crossfit Altius for making up a special early-morning birthday WOD for us, to our ambassador Elliott from Paz Studios for teaching our in-store birthday yoga, and to Gigi’s Cupcakes in Winston for making the most bomb GLUTEN FREE lululemon cupcakes that I’ve ever had (we were all extra thankful for a sweaty birthday WOD after the amount of cupcakes consumed in the showroom over the weekend… oops.)

So, so much community love came out of this weekend, and we’re truly grateful for each and every freaking one of you that we see in the showroom, out in classes, or really anywhere in the Triad area. This place is amazing, and it’s all because of you guys. Thanks for making our past year here so incredible!

 

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link love!

happy weekend, lovelies! here are some exciting things and good reads… enjoy!

– in honor of the exciting new opening of the  Cycle Loft in Greensboro, here are  eight reasons to love spin class! (as if we didn’t already…)

this article is incredibly beautiful. “Luxury, in its new context, is the enjoyment of the best in life: the experience of beauty, knowledge, and humanity at their deepest and most inspiring.”

why runners should practice yoga! I mean… why would you not want to practice yoga? But here’s even more motivation.

hellllooo, lovelies. (c’mon. Wouldn’t be right if there wasn’t at least one sweet recipe in here!)

an article that makes a block quote necessary. One of the most empowering things I’ve read in a while: “Your adventure is now, your time is here. Whether you can see the end point or even the middle point is of no importance; the reality is that it’s all happening whether you are trying or not. As long as you bring your authentic self to each step you take, as long as your hellos and goodbyes are more than just letters and syllables strung together, as long as you breathe this air that’s been circulating in our world since the beginning of time and let it sink into your bloodstream, it’s all happening.”

 – more reading, but this is cool

oh my gosh, want.

cute gym hair styles to go with your cute gym clothes? Yes, please.

– and finally, a super cute Easter DIY.

 

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seasonal foods: april

it’s april – the season of warm rain and freshly mowed grass, wearing shorts even when they’re not really quite necessary yet, and finally, a great selection of seasonal produce! As we segue into the warmer months, and are blessed enough to live in a state that has some incredible agriculture, I’ll be keeping a monthly list up on here of some of the beautiful, fresh, and seasonal eats that our beautiful earth gives us, as well as a smattering of accompanying recipes throughout the month, so you can best use those colorful beauties you pick up at the farmer’s market!

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some of the highlights that april has to offer us are:

artichokes

arugula

asparagus

avocado 

beets

broccoli

cauliflower

kale

onions (green)

peas

spinach

strawberries

so much fresh, healthy green and vibrant, beautiful red in there… I’m so excited to see all of the recipes this list can yield.

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