3 Fun Ways to Get Fit | Active Living

Blue skies and warmer weather mean one thing to me – It’s time to get outside! When the rainy, cold days of San Francisco Spring are further and further apart, I like to start taking my fitness outside.

All year long, I enjoy socializing with friends in active, healthy ways – Check out some tips in Social Fitness & Workout Dates. During the colder, darker months it’s all about Barre and Barry’s Bootcamp dates to catch-up. But this time of year – We can head outside for fun fitness dates!

Here are three of my favorite ways to head outside, stay fit, and spend quality time with friends or family, all at the same time.

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This is a family affaire.

My extended family’s favorite activity is hiking. Our holidays usually begin with a hike – Our favorite Thanksgiving tradition is to all meet somewhere for a hike followed by brunch. I also spent a good chunk of my childhood hiking around Northern California with my parents and brother. And my dog Molly. And on top of all that familial programming, one of my best friends is basically a professional hiker.

As an avid walker, I’m beyond lucky to live in the Bay Area – I can walk to the Golden Gate Bridge, get lost in the Presidio, or wander for hours in Golden Gate Park, just as easily as I can drive to the Marin Headlands or south of the city to a handful of state and national parks.

The options are endless and there’s a walk to be had regardless of how much time I have available and whether I’d prefer roads or trails.


Outdoor Bootcamps:

Regardless of where you live, there’s probably a crop of outdoor bootcamps springing up this time of year.

I regularly see three different bootcamps on my walk home – A kettlebell class on the Embarcadero, a mommy fitness group meeting in the park near Brannan Street Wharf, and a bodyweight HIIT class in the Financial District.

These are great because they offer a variety of styles of workouts – From resistance bands to bodyweight to kettlebells – And usually no membership is required, just a one-time drop in fee when you have time for a class. So take some time and do a little research on your city to see what’s available!

Running Stairs:

While I love running and enjoy a group run on occasion, I’ve found that most of my friends – Even the ultra fit ones – Don’t love running as much as I do. Turns out, there are fitness-minded people and then there are runners, and it would seem that those are two separate though occasionally intersecting groups. 🙂

That being said, however, I have discovered that even people who can’t/won’t go for a long run can appreciate the benefits of stair sprints! Planning an early morning stair run/interval session is always a popular activity this time of year.

Bonus points if you can turn your stair sprints into a HIIT workout! Add a little circuit of jumping jacks, squat jumps, and alternating reverse lunges after each stair sprint.

What’s YOUR favorite healthy outdoor activity?

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Summer Loving | Getting Ready for Summer

Even more so than any other time of year, this one means baring your skin, which has a lot of side effects. You want to feel confident and healthy, you want your skin to glow, and you want to feel like you’re setting off your figure in flattering way that makes you feel great.

Summer Body:

Time to start mixing up your workouts and try something new! If you started 2017 with some workout goals you may notice that you’re starting to plateau right about now.

That means it’s the optimal time to try a new workout or class, mix up your programing, or try an online fitness challenge.

I, for one, switched up my weight lifting program for bodyweight circuits, swimming, running, and a weekly barre class. Not only does this keep my body from plateauing, it keeps me engaged and having fun. And that’s the easiest way to stick to a fitness routine!

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{Image from Spring & Summer Fashions Pinterest Board}

Summer Skin:

With sun, sweat, salt, and water coming your way – You want you skin to be healthy, healthy, healthy going into warmer days.

A lightweight, but effective skin care routine is a must, and you should start auditioning some sunscreen brands for your adventures.

I’ve covered my beauty routine, favorite masks, and travel essentials, so check out the posts below:

Summer Wardrobe:

I have under-bed bins for my warm weather clothes – From swimsuits and cover-ups to skirts, dresses, and sarongs. In the past I’ve chosen classic colors and styles and well-made products, so I can go back to them year-after-year. Striped shirts, floral maxi dresses & skirts, patterned scarves, Jackie-O sunglasses, oversized denim shirts, nude sandals, and wide-brimmed hats are just a few of my staples.

While I’ll rely on my basics for the bulk of my dressing needs, I’ll also add a new piece or accessory or in-style color each season to keep things fresh.

For this season I’m eyeing new espadrille flats, some neutral-hued slides, and a colorful cuff bracelet.

How do YOU approach getting ready for Summer? Any suggestions?

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MCLV Mange: Easy Protein Pancakes

These healthy, easy protein pancakes are a STAPLE for me. They’re great hot out of the pan on a lazy Sunday morning, but they’re just as tasty cold while I’m at the office and need a midday snack.

I’ve gotten into the habit of making these on Sundays during my weekly food prep session and eating them at my desk after my afternoon workout.

Another thing that’s fun about these is that you can dress them up, or dress them down, with ease. Hot smothered in syrup or cold with some almond butter – They’re good no matter what you do to them!

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Protein Pancakes {1 serving}

Pancake Ingredients:

  • Protein Powder of Choice
  • 1/3  to 1/2 Banana {Fresh or frozen}
  • 1/3 Cup to 1/2 Cup of Egg Whites
  • Any spices you fancy – I like cinnamon but you could make a delicious seasonal version with pumpkin pie spice & nutmeg!}


  • Blend or mix ingredients together
  • Pour batter into a hot, coconut oil coated pan
  • Enjoy the goodness!

Stay tuned for the next MCLV Mange installment and check out the previous posts from this series here to see what you’ve missed so far

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A Fitness Girl’s Guide to Hair

While I love what working out does for my mind and my body, I don’t always love what it does to my hair. After a few years of daily, and sometimes twice daily workouts, I’ve found some tricks to help keep my hair healthy since perpetual sweat and ponytails aren’t always best.

So here’s my fitness girl’s guide to sweaty gym hair! 🙂

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Oil: Keeping your ends well moisturized is the key for healthy looking hair. I prefer spray oils and have recently fallen in love with Maui Moisture Nourish & Moisture + Coconut Milk Weightless Oil Mist. It smells lovely, but not overwhelming, and each bottle lasts forever since you only need a single spray per use.

Hair Ties: I have torn out more strands of hair than I care to admit by using the wrong hair ties. I’ve tried brand after brand, but didn’t have the Goldilocks moment until I discovered France Luxe. I talked about them a few years ago when I first discovered the brand, and this is still the only brand of ponytail holders that I use. Their Grab & Go Ponies don’t pull out your hair, cause kinks, and last for years!

Dry Shampoo: Dry shampoo is a staple for every gym-lover that I know. Depending on the texture of your hair you may be like me, I can’t wash it daily or it becomes brittle and breakable. This Klorane Dry Shampoo with Oat Milk works wonders on my sweaty locks.

Masks: On days when I wash my hair, I like to put a mask on and sit in the sauna or a hot bath for a few minutes. My hair always feels softer and healthier after a good mask. A current favorite is the Phyto Phytoelixir Intense Nutrition Mask. I love getting little single packets as well for when I’m traveling!

Every fitness girl has her favorite hair products – What’s YOURS?

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May Favorites: New Skin Care Products

This month has been all about preparing my skin for Summer. It’s a fun season that I look forward to, but it’s not easy on your skin! That made May a great time to try out some new products and see how I liked them while I try to get my skin in tip top shape.

Missed out on some of my previous favorites posts? Check out my January Favorites, February Favorites, March Favorites: Healthy Junk Food & April Favorites: Workout Gear

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Clarins Double Serum Complete Age Control Concentrate – Smells and feels great going on, and it’s really hydrating. You skin feels really healthy and moisturized afterwards.

Shiseido Benefiance Pure Retinol Intensive Revitalizing Face Mask – This is one of the best masks that I’ve tried in a while. Your skin looks amazing afterwards. It’s expensive, no doubt about it, but the mask works wonders.

Biossance Squalane + Peptides Eye Gel – This is a company who produces plant-based, sustainable products and this particular eye gel is non-toxic and fragrance, mineral oil, sulfate & paraben-free. I’ve been working on my under eye circles in recent months and this product seems to be a good one to have in my repertoire.

Clinique Smart Night Custom-Repair Moisturizer – I’ve been playing with night masks lately, but I like to use night cream at least every other night. They’re very rich and moisturizing, and my skin always laps it up!

Have YOU tried any new skin care products this year? What’s your favorite?

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