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42 posts from August 2012


Lithe Foods

Happy Friday! Summer is almost over, which means it's a great time to cleanse and get a jump start on fall and getting back to our routines with a Lithe Foods 3-Day Detox Meal Plan! Perfect for a Lithe newbie or veteran ($225 value each)! 

For a chance to win, please visit our Facebook page, "Like us" and then leave a comment at the post.  The winners will be chosen at random tomorrow and will be announced on Monday! Good luck! 

Image via Stuart Goldenberg

BELLY SHOT! 30 Aug 2012


Lithe Instructor, Kim Sauer is minus 28 days until she welcomes her second child (a girl!)!  I caught up with her right before she taught her last class on Friday, August 24th at Lithe Old City.  Kim, you look amazing and your energy is relentless!  We all can't wait until we can take your classes again, but in the meantime, we'll see you in class! 

Image of Kim showing off her belly (at 8 months) via Lauren

GET LITHE! 30 Aug 2012


Wanna learn how to Lithe? Say goodbye to the decadent days of summer with a fresh start for the fall. We have just a few spots left in our award-winning 3 week Immersion courses beginning in September.

Old City
Tuesdays & Thursdays 7pm-8pm, beginning September 11th

Mondays & Wednesdays 8:15pm-9:15pm, beginning September 10th

Main Line
Tuesdays & Thursdays 8pm-9pm, beginning September 11th

Image of Lithe instructor, Krista Denofa, via Dom

EATING LITHE! 30 Aug 2012

I love tofu and eat it almost every day, but many people think of it as a bland, unexciting meat substitute that is difficult to cook.  And while I totally get why, to them I say: Oh tofu you didn't! Tofu can make for an exciting and incredibly flavorful element in a wide array of dishes. It's not just for vegetarians either. Many asian cuisines use tofu with meat in various recipes to add texture and heft to a meal. Of course, for those of us trying to limit or eliminate our meat intake, tofu is perfect because it is low in fat (very low in saturated fat) and high in protein. Made from dried soybeans that have been ground, filtered, and boiled, tofu (or bean curd) is also an incredibly inexpensive ingredient that can contribute to some pretty elegant meals. 

Just like everything else we put into our bodies, however, soy is best eaten in moderation. Because while some studies show it can lower cholesterol and may even help prevent certain types of cancer, including breast and prostate, others have shown that concentrated soy products contain higher levels of phytoestrogens (estrogen-like chemicals that occur naturally in plants) which can possibly increase some women's risk of breast cancer. So, just one daily four-ounce serving is an excellent addition to a healthy diet.

If you're having trouble in the kitchen or not up for cooking tofu, Lithe Foods that can provide that serving.  Check out: 
Tofu Lettuce Wraps (my current almost daily staple)
Lithe Horchata Shake


STOMP! 29 Aug 2012


Stomping is a sub-catagory of cheerleading (here's a little history).  I have a ton of really fun stomp routines in my back pocket that I'm dying to infuse into Lithe, and so does Lithe Instructor, Bari Rosenthal.  Check her out!



Long time lither MaryTeresa tried to make lithing an olympic sport this year in London! She led her own Walk-Star around Notting Hill before doing some shopping at the famed Portobello Market. Wearing orange shirts in support of fellow Syracuse alum Carmelo Anthony, they managed to squeeze in a couple of plyos on their way to the US men's basketball game.

Have you been lithing on location? Send us your pics to blog@lithemethod.com and be the next to be featured!

Images of lither MaryTeresa Soltis and best friend Valerie Makarewicz Campion at the 2012 London Olympics via Michael Campion



Lauren's post last monday about overcoming fear couldn't have come at a more perfect time for me. In the midst of tons of personal upheaval (switching career paths and moving out of my apartment--just to scratch the surface), I've found myself riddled with anxiety and fear these last weeks, and needed a little inspiration to overcome it. 

When I was younger, I was fearless. Absolutely fearless. I back flipped off trampolines. I jumped off my parents' roof into their pool, I climbed trees (tall ones), I went down into sewers in search of Ninja Turtles (seriously I did), and I ate expired food without a second thought. I would urge my friends to drive faster, stay out later, and just generally had unshakeable confidence that things would always work out fine (except of course when it came to getting caught by my parents. No longer having that awful feeling in your stomach when you're in "trouble" is one of the things I savor most about being an adult. That and having no bedtime.)

But then something changed. My last 2 years in high school were plagued by the tragic and premature deaths of 17 students (no, that wasn't a typo. 17.) It was the kind of high school where the academics were fiercely competitive and many of the kids drove better cars than the teachers. And sadly, some students for reasons that have been speculated about for years since (too much time? too much money? too much pressure?), turned to drugs. Hard ones. Heroin, namely. And they were overdosing left and right. Before most of us could understand what was happening, we were in the midst of what national news outlets were calling an "epidemic." All of a sudden, Serena Altschul of MTV fame was doing a documentary on my fellow classmates, watching them shoot up in bathrooms, and undercover police officers posing as students were in our English classes, trying to figure out where all these drugs were coming from. (There was a bust at school, where they revealed themselves and took several of our classmates out the doors in handcuffs). And every week there was another funeral to attend and another emergency assembly begging us all to just say NO.

I look back on that time and still don't think I've truly wrapped my brain around all that my classmates and I went through. I do recognize however that those were the years that I realized I wasn't immortal, and that being young didn't mean that nothing bad could happen to you. So, not only did I stop being such a daredevil, I went into the total opposite direction and became a freak...scared of everything!

What was a normal dash to the store for tampons for most, was a risky brush with Toxic Shock Syndrome for me. (I think I read somewhere recently that they're removing TSS warnings from tampon boxes now because it doesn't actually exist. I would like those years of worrying back please, if that's the case! Tampax owes me BIG.) Random physical symptoms (headache, twitching left eye-lid) would send me in a panic to WebMD where I would diagnose myself as having something ridiculous like incurable malaria. (I have since banned myself from WebMD and refuse to google any random ailments I may have.) I scream when I see a bug. (Recently I almost stepped on a praying mantis and almost died. Seriously. Almost just fell over from the shear terror at the looks of that thing. And had the heeby jeebies for hours afterward.) I've also turned into the world's most annoying passenger. I grip the door handle. I hit the imaginary breaks under my feet, and I'm constantly yelling watch out! to the driver if I see a flicker of anything in my peripheral vision. And flying?? Forget about it. I get nervous a week before takeoff!

Needless to say, it's a situation. And times of stress only make me feel even more crazed and fearful. I've certainly come to realize that I'm being irrational and can usually breathe my way through it or tell myself I'm acting like a cray and move on, but there are other times where I feel just plain bummed that I'm not as daring and carefree as I used to be. So when Lauren said she jumped into some open water, despite her fears, and came face to face with a lemon shark, I thought a couple of things.

1. She jumped into open water and what she feared most HAPPENED! A freaking ginormous shark showed up!

2. She was just fine. And not only fine, but actually pumped and thrilled and happy that it happened.

So, I'm going to attempt to turn Lauren's lemon shark into lemonade and let go a little. Wayyy easier said than done, I know, but constantly being afraid of the unknown or what could happen is just no way to live either. Because although my traumatic experience in high school taught me that we don't live forever, I'd like to think there's a bigger lesson there too. One that doesn't involve being freaked out that things can go wrong or spin out of control at any moment. Perhaps it's just the opposite. That time spent worrying, is less time spent living, and that if my fellow classmates made it out of high school, they would be taking full advantage of it, and so should I.

First step? I'm going to start focusing on all the things that I do that are actually brave. I can think of a few. I think we all can. And perhaps feeling less like a weenie will have me acting less like one too. Here's hoping anyway.

So thanks Lauren for jumping in the water, and encouraging us all to do the same. I hear it's fine!

See you in class!

Image of Lither, Sayeh Hormozi, taken at the Montreal Botanical Gardens via Julie Zied

ENDVY! 28 Aug 2012


Lithe Instructor, Melissa Weinberg in Weightless via Lauren

LITHE-AID 28 Aug 2012

Hi Lauren,

I was wondering if I could make a request that you write something on the blog about lithing through depression. I am clinically depressed and have my up and down days, and there are times I'm just not "feeling it" to lithe, so I cancel or late cancel and feel even worse for missing a workout. I'm not sure if other lithers have this issue, but any tips you could offer about breaking through the mental roadblocks would be great.

Thank you so much for your brave email. Other lithers do deal with this issue. I receive emails like yours all the time, as depression is an issue that most of us have dealt with in varying degrees at one time or another in our lives. I'm not a doctor, so I consulted someone uniquely positioned to give some advice about how to cope on those down days we've all encountered. 

Dr. Anna Cannold Weiser is a Clinical Psychologist and long time Lither. Here's her take:

The first and most important piece of advice is that if you are clinically depressed, please seek treatment with a counselor. There are plenty of low-cost options in Philly ranging from local community mental health centers to insurance-based in-network providers. That said, it is great that you want to exercise. Exercise is a top recommendation that I make to clients (outside of coming to therapy) to help them with their depression.

There are multiple psychological benefits to exercise. Data show that it can be as powerful as supplemental medication in helping to alleviate symptoms of clinical depression (particularly more vigorous exercise, and as we all know, Lithe certainly qualifies as vigorous). In addition, social support is another critical building block on the path towards healing depression and preventing subsequent physical illness and Lithe is, at its core, a socially supportive community of women.

The approach that I advocate for those dealing with depression is to try to accept it, love it, and welcome it - like a house guest or a friend knocking on the door. We wouldn't ignore the knocks of a friend; we would go see who was there and let them in. The problem is, we often view depression as so unsafe to let in that we do not go to the door at all, nor let it in. We worry that if we recognize it and allow it inside, it will swallow us whole. This only makes the knocks louder, making depression worse. When someone or something wants our attention, it persists. The same goes for clinical depression – when it is knocking at the door to deliver a message, it is something that begs to be seen, heard, and examined. My work with clients is always about trying to help them listen for the knocks and get to the door. Next, we work to carefully unpack whatever awaits on the other side while keeping oneself as healthy and stable as possible. Unfortunately, clinical depression can be one of the trickiest and most stubborn biologically-based mental processes, often leaving people feeling understandably desperate and frustrated.

Here are two approaches Lithers can use when we want to exercise yet depression makes it hard to get motivated and bring ourselves to the studio.

Approach 1 is gentle and the route of least resistance. Try to be kind and good to ourselves, and know that if we are too depressed to exercise, it is okay. There is always tomorrow (or next month) and when we are ready, we can get back into the studio. Sometimes the body and the mind need to heal, need quiet, and need to rest. It is a gift to peacefully allow ourselves that respite. In this case, the mandatory work is around trying to dialogue with our own nasty, frustrating, auto-pilot inner critic who tells us that without a workout, a certain pair of pants, or a number on the scale, we are no good. This kind of equanimity takes Buddhist monks a lifetime to work on, but we can try. And we can make progress! It can become our goal to fully examine whose voice that is (usually it is not ours but rather may be a highly critical former mentor, family member, or even society - talking to us and being quite mean with stale rotations of the same old critical jabs) and to re-focus that voice with our own true voice (the "it is okay to take this break, I will be gentle with myself, I will not fall apart if I miss this class and I am permitting myself with intention to cancel for today and just read a book" voice). It is important to talk to ourselves nicely like this even if it is a bit of a revolution. Remind yourself that you are taking time for you and that it is okay to be out of the studio or to cancel the class. This approach is about kindness, permission, and nurturing our own inner voice in lieu of the automatic (not always kind) one. I often ask my clients to imagine their own voice with a volume knob like on a stereo. Take hold and try to turn it up.

Approach 2 is about taking a deep breath and trudging through, under the assumption that the depressed self is often a bad fortune-teller and has faulty predictions about how we will feel and what we should do. Like Cognitive Behavioral Therapy treatments, it can take dozens of times of doing something to break old habits and emotional experiences and then create new ones that start to feel tolerable, good, and even better. Sometimes we need to continue to suffer through the unpleasant moments of convincing ourselves to push towards health. This approach is focused on trying to work with the critic within our minds. The depressed mind can be a saboteur telling you: “I'll feel worse (or no better) if I go to class” or “what's the point” or “I'm too tired” or “it has been such a terrible week.” We need to question the depressed self about how good he/she is at steering the ship, test the depressed mind’s hypotheses, and challenge the depressed mind's answers. Set REASONABLE goals for yourself, and commit to seeing them through (even if you have to grin and bear it for a short while). Often it is painful and hard at the beginning but rewarding by the end. Little by little, we can learn to take charge of our mind. We can learn to take ourselves off of emotional autopilot. 

A simple exercise that can help with shifting emotions and making decisions that I use with clients is called 10/10/10/10/10. We can use this for both approaches 1 and 2. 

Let's say we choose to push ourselves to go to a class despite our depressed mood. Right now you may feel exhausted, achy, sad and wanting to be alone. 

How about in:

10 minutes/10 hours/10 days/10 weeks/10 months

How do you imagine you'll feel at each interval?

It is with this type of precise attention (rather than negative and automatic assumptions) that we can begin to heal our erroneous perceptions that often cause us to stay stagnant in our depression and avoid the very things we know will help us to heal. Perhaps we need a gentle break by staying at home or perhaps we need a nudge to get our butts into a class. Letting ourselves think and feel in such an expansive way can often help us to come to a nurturing decision. 

You might be surprised where your thoughts and feelings will take you. And it might just be to a Lithe class...

Image of Lauren Boggi Goldenberg for Everlast, 2007 via Dom



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Start following http://twitter.com/lithemethod if you aren't already and tweet “Having a #fithiphealthy summer thanks to @lithemethod" for your chance to win a 5 class card.

We'll announce the winner on the @lithemethod Twitter page. Remember, all entries must be received by 11:59 pm/et on 8/28/2012. Limit one entry per day per person/twitter address. Check out the rules here. 

Image of instructors, Brooke Holloway (wearing Lithe's Slimming Pants and Rhythm Tee) and Kim Sauer wearing Lithe's Leather leggings in Thigh High at Old City via Dom

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