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41 posts from April 2014

ME ON MONDAY (THE LITHE COOKING CO-OP)! 30 Apr 2014

Art

Smack in the middle of Lithe Spring Clean, two of my girlfriends and I got together and had a ton of fun with in the kitchen with spices.  If you're eating clean, the power of spices can really transform food and trick your taste buds.  When I think of spice these days, the name Lior Lev Sercarz is what comes to mind.  My sister-in-law, Laurie and my friend Jess (above) both know Lior personally, so it was really fun hearing stories about the blends that we were using. 

Known as the spice master to the stars, Lior Lev Sercarz has blended for names like Le Bernardin, Daniel and even Zahav here in Philly.  If you walk into his spice shop, La Boîte à Epice, Lior will happily talk you through spice, and then weather, and then whatever you like, really. We grabbed his new book, The Art of Blending, and made some incredible lamb and eggplant dishes using his Za'atar, Dali and Vadouvan blends. 

It was so fun to experiment in the kitchen; we cooked and shared, combining expertise, skills and supplies. Stay tuned for our next edition, and I'll be extending a special invitation to all of you! 

Images via Lauren

LITHE NEWTRITION (SEASONAL ALLERGIES & YOUR DIET!) 30 Apr 2014

NewTrition

Welcome to our new column, NewTrition, written by Lithe Instructor and trained chef, Danielle Ingerman! We're debunking common food and nutrition myths by giving you facts about sugar, fat—even comfort food—and more, so you can feel good about diggin' the foods that you love.  Danielle is studying to be a Registered Dietitian at Drexel University's College of Nursing and Health Professions.  Her favorite class is Micronutrient Metabolism, and she's currently interning at CHOP and a private practice in Trenton, NJ.  I'm thrilled that she's shedding some fresh and passionate "Eating Lithe" insight here on Fit.Hip.Healthy!  

(sigh) Springtime- the sun is shining, the flowers are blooming, happy hour has never been happier, unless you’re like me sniffling and congested from seasonal allergies. I have never been diagnosed with an actual allergy, but as many of you may witness yourselves, a lot of the time you don’t need to get a thousand needle pricks (AH!) to tell you what’s making your eyes look like you are perpetually watching the end of ‘The Notebook.” While many of you, like myself, look to the pharmacy shelves to help us out, you’d be surprised to know how much our diet plays into many of our symptoms.

Being a mildly lactose-intolerant human, my mother basically made milk products look like the plague (think the mother from the Waterboy.) She was convinced any ailment I had GI-related or not had to do with dairy consumption. Although I was able to shake off a lot of that mentality, one thing did stick- when I am congested, should I eat any form of dairy (lactose heavy or not) my condition gets exceedingly worse. Many old-world medicinal practices support minimal consumption of dairy, claiming that it acts as an immune-blocker, so I looked a little deeper into the research surrounding this idea. Turns out, studies have found individuals with dairy sensitivities DO experience progression of congestive symptoms upon ingesting milk-products. So although my allergies are not directly related to milk products, with my sensitivities, it only makes things worse. Who woulda thunk it? Of course, my findings have only been validated in people with dairy woes like myself, but hey, you only know what works until you try it! The beauty is that we are our own test subjects- anyone else ever give this a go?

Image of Lithe Instructor Danielle Ingerman wearing Lithe via Dom

DEAR LITHE (LOVE LETTERS). 30 Apr 2014

love letters

Dear Lithe,
This past January depression set it. Single, cold, and overweight. I came back from a family vacation and was the heaviest I had ever been and felt like I couldn't even walk a mile. I have been taking Lithe classes on and off since 2011 but as of January hadn't gone in a year and figured Id give it another shot. Since then my whole life as completely turned around and I owe it all to you.

For starters I love my lithe friends. From morning til night we text about what classes were taking and remind eachother what each class entails. I love walking into class and seeing so many familiar faces smiling and waving. Keeps me motivated and excited to workout everyday!

Next, I love the staff. From Lauren to Danielle to Jonathan and everyone in between, everyone at Lithe makes me feel great! Always there to answer questions and listen to me talk about nonsense ( even if they dont care!) Everyone is so passionate and knowledgeable  and they all do their best to make Lithe a welcoming environment.

Finally, I love me. I have never felt more alive and good about myself than I do right now.  I was Lithing 4-5 times a week and since the challenges started I have upped it to 5-6 ( I hit 7 once!) I would have never thought I would actually look forward to my workout but I do every single day. I get stressed if I have to miss a day and try my best to change plans to work around lithe, I have even cancelled dates! There is no better feeling in the world than completing a class especially a barre focused class. Anyone who knows me knows how terrified I was of the barre in the beginning, now I get excited because I know how good it feels when Im done!

I would love to end this with telling you that I have now have a six pack and have lost 20 lbs since January but I cant. I can tell you that I have realized that being happy with my  body is NOT about the number on the scale but about the smile  I give my reflection every single morning. I am so proud of the woman I have become both physically and mentally and I owe it to Lithe. Thank you for being a great boyfriend, an awesome best friend, and a second family. I love you Lithe!


xoxo Jill Horn xoxo

#TMINUS30 TANK 29 Apr 2014

T30 Tee

Complete the challenge and show your Lithe pride (and your arms)!  Sizes: XS-XL

8PM! 28 Apr 2014

8pm

Every Monday & Wednesday at Rittenhouse! 

Image of Retired Lithe Instructor Bianca P. wearing Lithe via Dom

INSPIRATION 28 Apr 2014

Return

LITHE WKND 25 Apr 2014

WKND-1

Coming this summer...

FIT.HIP.FRIDAY GIVEAWAY! 25 Apr 2014

FHH

Happy Friday! This week we're giving away a Lithe 5 class card!  For a chance to win, please leave a comment below telling us what you loved most about the #LitheSpringChallenge!  One winner will be chosen at random on Monday, so you have three days to enter. One entry per person. Class card will be automatically added to the winner's account with normal expiration applied. Thank you, and good luck!

Image of Lauren Boggi in Lithe's Thigh High (created in 2008) via Dom

#TMINUS30 24 Apr 2014

T-Minus 30

Image of Lithe Instructor Diana Khuu via Dom

25 THINGS! {BY SAYEH} 24 Apr 2014

  Coleen

I could write my own 25 things about this week’s feature instructor, Colleen McNally. Among those 25 things I would include that I look forward to her classes, how infectious her energy is, how she pumps me up by getting louder at just the right times, and shouting things like YOU’RE SO STRONG, right when I’m about to give in to the burning desire for a break. I’d include how she always seems to pick the right playlist, how the volume is just high enough to keep things up-beat, and just low enough that I can hear her cues. I’d say that she reminds me of a beautiful elf from a Lord of the Rings Movie (this is a compliment!), and that you can tell she enjoys teaching and how that shows in my new favorite class: Colleen’s Sleeveless 2.0. I hope you enjoy finding out more about as much as I did.

  1. I am 31 not 24. Ladies, you are the sweetest.
  2. I have 2 calendars to keep my life straight. One in the kitchen so I can see it constantly and the one on my phone. I’d be lost without them.
  3. I despise being late. That being said, I’m either really late or really, really early.
  4. I have a son. His full name is Maximillian Ryan McNally. He’ll be three next month.
  5. I delivered my son naturally. Aka no drugs
  6. Nothing makes me feel more strong and sexy than a full plank push-up.
  7. My dream life would be to sell everything I own and move to somewhere warm and tropical near a beach, and to live minimally and shoeless. I hate shoes.
  8. My biggest fear is roller coasters. I went on one once to face my fear. I hyperventilated and threw up.
  9. I have really bad vision. My eyes are a -6.75 and -6.0.
  10. I was in college for 7 years but not because I was failing. I started community college when I was 21 to get some core credits done. I applied to Temple University for Dance my third year and was rejected. So, I decided to keep at it and the following year I was accepted into Temple. Once I got there, they wouldn’t let me take my dance composition course out of sequence. That added on another three and a half years. Even though it was the hardest thing I’ve ever done, I learned so many different things in those 7 years. Painting, pottery, drawing, art history, psychology, spanish, and dance to name just a few.
  11. I was vegetarian for 12 years, vegan for 2. I started eating meat again in November. Now when I open my fridge, I can’t help but laugh at all the meat.
  12. Some of my favorite movies are Bring it On, Labyrinth, A League of their Own, and Mean Girls. Sometimes I quote them in class to give you ladies a little boost of motivation.
  13. Growing up, I watched a lot of documentaries and National Geographic Shows that explained the cultural or aesthetic reasons behind tattooing and piercing. I was obsessed and my parents knew they were in for it. So, when I turned 18 my mom had the foresight to take me for my first.
  14. When I was a little girl, I would almost always fall down the steps in front of my house around Easter. In most of my Easter pictures, I have a scab on my nose.
  15. I was named by a drunk man. My mother wanted to name me Brooke but her sister took it for her daughter. So my parents were at a loss. My dad wanted to name me Grace Kelly because he thought she was the most beautiful woman alive. My mom didn’t care for it. They were at the VFW one night and one of our family friends said, “Well what about Colleen Grace?” There it was...my name.
  16. I’ve been on a year goal with physical fitness. My main focus is consistency.  I can go really strong for 3 months then I burn out and have to start all over again right when I start to really see results. So i changed my attitude and decided to be more gentle and true to myself. I am a single mother with two jobs and some days fitting in everything is impossible. Do or die is no longer my main approach. Instead, I get more sleep and work consistently toward my best results by the end of the year. It has made all the difference.
  17. Early in my pregnancy, I was crazy about cereal. At one point I looked in my cabinet and I had 6 boxes of cereal. Not the healthy kind, but Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Lucky Charms, Crunch Berries. Roasted peppers and cooked vegetables grossed me out. My other obsession was ice cream. That one stuck. I am so OBSESSED with ice cream. Cookies and cream is my favorite, half baked by Ben and Jerry’s, anything at Franklin Fountain, Little Babies, frozen yogurt...whatever you name it. Nothing beats that cold, creamy, yummy goodness.
  18. I love coffee. Sometimes I dream about my morning coffee and rush to bed so I can wake up and have it. Last spring I did a 3 week cleanse sans caffeine. At first I wanted cheese, bread, ice cream, sugar, anything. By the end, I almost broke the entire cleanse for that morning cup. All I wanted was that coffee.
  19. I went to Catholic School for 12 years. In that time, I played piccolo and flute, was in the theater department, literary magazine, and a cheerleader.
  20. I also use to play the piano.
  21. I have 14 tattoos in total. When I was younger, I wanted to be reborn as a star. (that’s not a joke ;)) so naturally my first tattoo was the three stars on my back. An owl on my left calf because I collect kitschy owls. Hello Kitty on my right ankle because I’ve been obsessed with her for as long as I can remember. Kuan Yin on the back of my right calf. I went vegan after reading about Zen Buddhism. The flowers on my right wrist are a pretty cover-up. The two on my wrists are Biblical references from the Old and New Testaments. The power lines and windmills because I think they are the two most beautiful man made things. A sketch of my favorite modern dancer, Martha Graham. I have a mantra on the top of my stomach that says “Loka samasta sukino bahvantu.” Finally, Wall-e and Eve.  They are reminders that love should be simple and as humans we make it complicated. The whole movie he just wanted to hold her hand.
  22. I started dancing when I was four. I remember the distinct moment when I was in ballet class and at the barre thinking that there was nothing I could ever love more. I grew up doing tap, jazz and ballet and was finally introduced to modern dance in 2002. At first I thought it was so crazy. Why are these people making me dance like a tree? But I fell in love with it. It is boundless and limitless. You can do anything in modern dance. I couldn’t imagine my life not being a mover.
  23. I’m really shy. Like nervous and anxious at a party-shy. That’s why I really love people who make you feel like you’ve known them for a million years.
  24. I once went camping by myself for four days in Atsion, NJ. I was going through a rough period in my life.  I needed to get away from all human contact. I pitched my own tent, started my own fires, went hiking, canoeing and swimming in the red cedar water.
  25. All things Lithe: My favorite workout to teach is Sleeveless 2.0. The look of determination on your faces from beginning to end is remarkable. It is seriously amazing. I started Lithe in 2012 with my girlfriend, Nicole Andreola. You’ve probably seen her around. Barre is my nemesis. It takes tons of mental motivation for me to get through it. I believe in the saying though, “if you hate it, you probably need to be doing it.” I love Lithe. It’s seriously changeling and fun. It has been the only form of exercise that has been close to my dance training. I love that it can take me back to cheerleading and dance and completely kick my butt.

Image of Colleen in a heel stretch via Dom

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