Workout Wardrobe

Five Tips To Improve Your Run

This post is sponsored by Zappos and Brooks Running. All opinions are my own.

Cardio isn’t hardio if you incorporate awesome outdoor scenery, beautiful weather, and some awesome running gear into your workouts! I used to hate the monotony of running, but I’m learning to love it more and more and seeing awesome changes in my endurance and stamina. I currently do cardio once a week, and try to run outside on nice days. Here are some tips to making running fun and stick with your schedule!

Wearing Brooks Dash 1/2 zip (top) and Revel (shoes)

Tip #1: Dynamic Stretches Before and Static Stretches After Your Run

Often you see runners doing static stretches before their run. I always wondered about this, so I asked a marathon runner if it’s necessary. I also read through some articles in popular running magazines and discovered that most people don’t need to do static stretches before running. The best thing to do is dynamic stretches such as high knees before your run to get you ready, and then after your workout, static stretches are great!

Tip #2: Build Endurance Gradually

Part of the reason I used to hate running so much is because I decided to try a half marathon a few months after I had started running. The experience was so tough that I stopped running for years after that. It’s much better to build your distance and endurance slowly so that your body can get used to running longer distances over a period of time.

Wearing Brooks Chaser 3″ Shorts

Tip #3: Choose the right shoes

Cushion and arch support are crucial to having a running shoe that fits properly and won’t cause pain during your runs. The last thing you want to think about is how much your shoes hurt with every stride! I’ve found the perfect shoes by Brooks on the Zappos website, and they have the perfect arch support for me. The Zappos site has so many different options for a wide variety of athletic shoes to choose from.

Another thing I did was to do a foot analysis to determine what kind of support I need. It was determined that I have high arches, so I definitely need the right shoes.

Tip #4: Stay Hydrated

It’s so easy to keep running and forget to hydrate! I always remember to hydrated before beginning my run. If i’m feeling tired or dehydrated during my run, I always stop and be sure to grab a drink or bottle of water. It’s easy to forget and hydration is essential especially on a hot day!

Wearing Brooks Distance tank

Tip #5: Wear the Right Clothes

Having running gear that keeps you dry especially for those hot days is essential for optimal health! I love gear that is sweat-wicking like these shorts from Brooks. What I also love about them is the hidden pocket – I always make sure my shorts or leggings have hidden pockets for my keys and other essential items.

I hope you enjoyed these tips and that you have an awesome workout on your next run!

To shop  my outfit, click the links below!

Brooks long sleeve zip top

Brooks Revel shoes

Brooks Chaser shorts

Brooks Distance tank top

From Day to Night, Outfits for All Occasions

It’s workout time with new gear sponsored by Zappos.

The one thing I love about summer is that it’s warm enough for outdoor workouts! My absolute favorite time for an outdoor workout is right around sunset, because it’s cooling down but still really nice out. I just got some awesome new workout gear from Zappos to keep me looking stylish and cool while I sweat. I’ve found an amazing little spot on the rooftop of a building in Oakland to work out. Luckily I can squeeze in my workout before date night with the husband.

Today was bodyweight exercise day – lunges, burpees, push-ups, and planks were all on the list. And after my workout was done, I got a chance to stretch and take in the view from above!

   

Wearing:

Nike Sportswear Gym Classic Capri

Nike Dry Performance Cushion Low GFX Training Socks

Nike Pro Indy Cooling Sports Bra

Red Nike Hat

Nike Free Shoes

Date Night #OOTD With the Husband!

It’s funny because I had a whole post on Instagram the other day about high heels are bad for our posture, so I’m always looking for shoes that pair well with a dress but still keep me looking stylish. Luckily I shop at Zappos where they have SO many different types of shoes and you can even sort by the style you are looking for.  I found the perfect outfit for tonight; I know, I know, I always have some sort of sporty flair to my outfits, but I think this one is perfect for a casual night out to dinner and a movie!

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Wearing:

Puma T7 Dress

PUMA Basket Platform Strap

The thing I love best about Zappos is that their customer service is top notch, and things arrive so quickly. Shipping is usually free, and I literally got all of my stuff 2 days after I ordered, just in time for Friday’s activities! I would definitely recommend checking out the site if you’re looking for affordable and unique clothes and shoes!

I hope you all have a fantastic weekend! Happy Shopping!

Permission to Pause / Sponsored by Athleta

I’m one of those people who goes to yoga classes, and while attempting to twist myself into a lopsided pretzel have a million things running through my mind. It doesn’t  matter how many times the instructor has me meditate or try to focus on the present. Thoughts like, “What’s on  my grocery list?” “Is my car in a towaway zone?” or “Did I forget to respond to an important email?” race through my mind faster than a session of cardio HIIT. It’s ironic that sometimes we have to give ourselves “permission to pause,” when taking breaks should be second nature. Yet in a world where everything is fast-paced and things are expected on demand, it’s important to remind ourselves that taking time to focus on only ourselves isn’t selfish, it’s necessary.

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For the past few months leading up to my wedding, I had severe anxiety. It wasn’t because I was nervous about getting married or trying to make everything perfect, rather it was because I had so many things to do on my checklist that I was constantly worried about running out of time. I remember the days before my wedding I couldn’t sleep, and as I much as I kept trying not to, I constantly replayed my to- do list over and over in my head like a bad Justin Bieber remix.

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It wasn’t till my anxiety began to affect my health that my fiancee (now husband) was like, “you really need to relax.” And he was completely right. Not only had my anxiety affected me mentally, but it also began to affect my body negatively. It was then I knew things needed to change.

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After my wedding, I began taking more time for myself. The concept of permission to pause is so real to me because I experienced firsthand what it could be like if I continued in GO mode, never taking the time to relax or slow down. My health problems were the culmination of a few months, but what if that continued for years?

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Luckily one of my all-time favorite activewear brands, Athleta is running a “permission to pause” campaign, centered around mindfulness and restoration. The soft fabric and neutral colors of these pieces inspire me to relax, clear my mind, and take time for myself. Today I sat on a bench, enjoying my peaceful surroundings and thought about how thankful I am to have time to  myself to enjoy the little things. It’s not until we take time to pause that we can become the best version of ourselves when we start up again. I hope my story inspires you to take some time out for you today. And if you want to shop my the Restore line and my picks, you can click the links below!

Shop the entire line!

Studio Wrap

Restore Jogger Pants

Namaste.

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Activewear Haul With My Favorite Brands

This awesome and trendy new Adidas and Vans activewear haul is sponsored by Zappos. All opinions are my own.

I’m not sure about you, but it’s summer, and my wardrobe was in need of an overhaul. I’ve been wearing the same things over and over since last year, so finally I decided to invest in some new clothes!

Adidas and Vans are two of my favorite brands, so I decided to get some new pieces that I can mix and match. Because I’m always on the go and working out almost every day of the week, I need clothes that can transition from workouts to running errands or being on the go later in the day.

Thursday – Making Time for Fitness Between Errands

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Wearing: Adidas Originals Linear Leggings  and Adidas Techfit Bra 

I couldn’t wait to take my new clothes on a test drive. Yesterday was a busy day for me, but I made time for some Pilates and yoga in the park. One of the things I’ve been doing on a regular basis is to workout outdoors a few times a week now that summer is here and the weather is beautiful. Stretching for 30 minutes a day in the morning gets my blood flowing and keeps me energized all day.

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I had some errands to run to the dry cleaners and grocery store today, but after my workout, I decided to take a stroll on the way by a local bookstore to check out the selection of books.

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Wearing: Adidas Originals Trefoil SweatshirtAdidas Originals Linear Leggings , Adidas Tote Bag

I picked up a few books, tossed them in my new bag and was on my way! A few hours later, all of my errands were complete, and it was wonderful sitting down with my new books for a relaxing evening home!

Friday – Fun On Wheels

Fridays are often my days off, when I can have a little fun if I got all of my errands and work done for the week. Since yesterday was a busy day and I pretty much did it all, I decided to have a little fun with my new skateboard, a Christmas present from last year from my husband! I bought some new Vans gear since it’s the brand of choice for skaters, paired with my new Adidas jacket, I was ready to go!

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Wearing: Vans Authentic™ Lo ProAdidas Training Jacket (blue)Vans Snoopy Leggings 

I’m still learning, and I’m a little wobbly but so determined to learn a new skill! I actually sat on this bench and googled some how-to videos on YouTube for a bit to learn from some pros! LOL.

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My favorite were: start on the grass to grasp your balance, use large pushes to get your board going, and put your back foot down on the floor to stop. I’m finally getting my balance right, and my Snoopy leggings were there to keep me smiling and motivated to get better!

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I lasted a few hours without completely bailing, so I would say today’s adventures were a success!

Ordering from Zappos

For the longest time, I thought Zappos only made shoes. Recently I learned that they have SO much more than just shoes, and a ton of awesome brands to choose from! What also surprised me was their fast customer service; I ordered my new gear and got it within just a few days. Everything fit great thanks to the sizing charts, but it’s super easy if you need to return or exchange something. I would definitely recommend shopping with them from my great experience!

 

 

Hope you enjoyed hanging out with me for the past few days! Have a great weekend, and hope you have some fun! If you want to update your wardrobe too, here are the links to the things I bought!

Vans Authentic™ Lo Pro

Vans Snoopy Leggings

Adidas Originals Superstar (white)

Adidas Training Jacket (blue) 

Adidas Techfit Bra 

Adidas Originals Trefoil Sweatshirt 

Adidas Tote Bag 

Adidas Originals Linear Leggings 

Exercises to Try Next Time You’re Outside!

It’s finally spring, which means it’s time to get outside, and today I’m going to share some awesome outdoor workouts, sponsored by Zappos!

The weather has been gorgeous here in Northern California. So in between the rainy days, I take every opportunity for a hike or outdoor workout because the scenery is much more breathtaking than the inside of the gym!

The start of a new season is also my favorite time to get new gear. Because I’ve been doing a lot more outdoor HIIT (high intensity interval training) up and down steep hills in addition to bodyweight workouts on uneven ground, I have to make sure that my shoes have good traction and are stylish too! I just got a new pair of Brooks Pureflow 6 shoes, top and leggings from Zappos, and I’m loving them! More about my shopping experience a little later. But without further ado, let’s talk about workouts!

HIIT Sprints

For HIIT, my favorite is HIIT sprints. Doing this once or twice a week definitely burns fat and elevates your metabolism so you can even be torching calories when at rest. One way I stay lean is to get in my sprints as my form of cardio. I like to add intensity to my sprints by doing them on the trails for a bit of an incline. Try this workout and let me know what you think!IMG_7676_E

Sprint uphill 50 to 70 percent speed and then walk or jog back down the hill for your recovery. I usually stop after I’ve sprinted and walked back down 10 times. Then I climb the hill for a nice scenic view!

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Bodyweight Workout

Another type of workout I love to do when outside is bodyweight workouts. This includes dynamic lunges, squats, and if you can find a bench, push-ups and tricep dips! But in order to do this, I need a lot of good traction, and once again, my Brooks gear from Zappos came through!

I recently posted on Instagram about building strength for push-ups, one of the most difficult exercises to do for those without a lot of upper body strength.  A great way to build the strength is to do push-ups on a bench or elevated surface until you can do a full push-up!

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Try doing 10 reps of these 4 times!

Awesome new Brooks Gear from Zappos!

So this season, I ordered a new pair of Brooks Pureflow 6 shoes – chosen because not only did they get awesome reviews on Zappos, but they are very lightweight, and have good traction on the bottom for those steep mountainous climbs. I also got a cute Brooks top and pair of performance leggings from Brooks to match my shoes! I felt great going up and down the mountain and got in my HIIT and some push-ups too!

I wanted to make sure that I got my new gear quickly and had the opportunity to return – often things online don’t work out for me or don’t fit right. Luckily Zappos has fast and free shipping and a 365 day return policy.

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I was shocked at how reasonably priced my Brooks gear was but how high-quality it was. The shoes were so supportive up and down the rocky terrain, and the clothes kept me dry even though I was sweating.

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Like my outfit? Get this look from Zappos.com!

Hope you guys all liked this post and that you get outside for some fun outdoor workouts!

Love from California,

Shannon

PS – Special thanks to my fiancee Kelvin, who came to work out and enjoy a beautiful day with me! 🙂

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Yoga Pants – Not Just for Yoga Anymore (Part 2)

About a month ago,  I posted about how yoga pants aren’t just for yoga anymore! I’m one of those people who continues to wear my yoga pants on every occasion. People always say that I look pulled together and fashionable, but little do they know that I’m often wearing the same pair of favorite pants – the competitor tight – from Style Firm Los Angeles! I discovered them while shopping in Bloomingdales in Santa Monica, CA and have been hooked ever since. They do a great job of making my booty look nice and toned!

Take a look at how I styled these leggings 4 ways!

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This is my usual gym look, featuring the competitor tights. I also styled these with one of my favorite sports bras from Lorna Jane (unfortunately it’s not made anymore) and the Style Firm Modern Long Jacket!

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This is my classy party look, and one of my favorite dresses from Anthropologie that is SO versatile that I’ve worn it to company holiday parties, weddings, and even to a nice dinner with my fiancee. I’m wearingthe competitor tights underneath to keep the look pulled together (and because it’s been 30 degrees in California lately)!

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This is my casual everyday look for meeting friends and staying warm. If you can believe it, I got this packable down jacket at Costco of all places for $20. These competitor tights continue to keep me warm! This long jean shirt is from Madewell, and my boots are from Forever 21!

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This is one of my favorite looks for running errands or going to the movies! I’m still wearing my competitor tights to stay pulled together and looking cute, and my sweatshirt is from Serengetee, an awesome company also from Los Angeles who travels the world to source fabric, using the profit from sales to support local artisans and fabric makers from all over the world.

So there you have it! Which one is your favorite look? Happy 2017 everyone!

Yoga pants – not just for yoga anymore!

I love a nice pair of ripped designer denim or chic pair of slacks, but you can’t match the comfort of a great pair of leggings! People always ask me how I transition my activewear from the gym to the office or even to date night, and the answer is: pair your leggings with some great classic pieces!

Here I take my favorite pair of leggings from Avocado Activewear and pair it with some favorite pieces from my closet to create four completely different looks! The key I’ve found is to choose leggings in neutral colors that can go with anything and are also nice quality and not transparent (no see-through leggings please)! Let me know what you think of these looks in the comments below!

Leggings in all 4 photos: Avocado Activewear

Sporty Look: Avocado Activewear Shield Jacket

Office Chic Look: Vintage Blazer from my closet – BCBG, Dress – Forever 21 ruched dress

Casual Boots Look: Betabrand Morning Mess Jacket, Betabrand Cowl Neck Grey Chevron Tunic, Boots – Vintage Joan and David Riding Boots

Athleisure Look: Leather jacket – Bebe, Avocado Modern Hoodie, Button Down Shirt – Zara

Get Outside!

I grew up in a household without nature. Sure, we had grass in the back yard and trees on our neighborhood block like most kids in the suburbs. And I remember that some of my classmates would spend their summer vacations going camping. My mom’s famous line was “I hate nature” and glamping was not yet a thing! Thus, my summer vacations were spent going to Disneyland and or short trips to Carmel in nice hotels.

Don’t get me wrong; I’m not complaining at all about our annual trips to Disneyland (a kid’s dream, for sure!), but it took me into adulthood to discover nature, and I wish that I had sooner. There’s something so relaxing about being away from buildings everywhere and getting a chance to just be one with yourself. Not to mention that hiking is great exercise!

And science backs it up too: A study proved that people who lived within 1 kilometer of a park or a wooded area experienced less anxiety and depression than those who lived farther away from green space. Here are some tips on getting outside for busy people!

  • Get a regular hiking buddy. For many people, it’s hard to motivate yourself, but having a regular partner to hike with can help you stay committed and look forward to spending time with them. You can push each other to try more challenging hikes.
  •  Plan in advance. If you schedule your hikes ahead of time and write it down on your calendar, you’re more likely to stay committed. If you plan in advance, it could also be something to look forward to during the day or on the weekends.
  •  Pack your gear ahead of time. If you have everything ready to go, it will seem like less of a burden to actually get out there. Have your backpack, gear, and water ready to go the day before.
  •  Get a hiking group together. You’ll be more likely to go if you make it a fun social activity! It’s great to find like-minded people with similar interests. They might introduce you to some new spots and vice-versa and it’s a great opportunity to explore together!

 

Hope this post inspires you to get outside! 🙂

Wearing: Dona Jo Fitwear https://www.donajofitwear.com/