Fit Feminist Blog

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Here’s An Easy Way to Spend Less Time Sitting on Your Butt

Want to stop sitting on your butt all day? Me too!

I’m spending more and more time doing executive-type tasks and less time teaching in the studio these days, so I’m going out of my way to make sure I’m not just sitting around.

After doing a bit of research on ergonomic desk/seating options, I became convinced that other forms of alternative seating — like kneeling chairs and stability ball chairs — aren’t terribly effective.

I decided to give a stand-up desk a try.

stand up desk from ikea

I have to say I have noticeably fewer aches and pains when I spend the workday here instead of seated in a chair!

I was able to find everything I needed for my desk at IKEA, and it came to around $165 all together.

ikea cart

I used the GERTON Adjustable Legs. At $30 a piece, they were a bit pricier than the other models available, but worth it since they were the only ones with a max height of 42″ instead of the other legs, which max out around 35″.

I’m a little over 5’6″ and I find it most comfortable to adjust the legs a couple inches lower than the max.

For the top, I used the white LINNMON top, which sells for $45.  It’s over 78″ long and perfect for two people to use side by side when needed.

I still find that when I’m using a laptop while standing it feels better to raise the computer up on top of a couple yoga blocks so I don’t have my chin on my chest all day.  When I sit, it feels better to take the laptop off the blocks.

FULL DISCLOSURE: I’m not 100% thrilled with the quality of the legs.  One of them broke when we were tightening it to the desk top so I’ll have to trek back to IKEA to return it at some point.  In the meantime, we used an L-bracket to secure that corner of the desk to the wall so that I could start using it right away.

metal adjustable stool

In case I want to sit, I can tuck an adjustable stool under the desk.  I got this metal stool for $50 at Homegoods.

I also put a nice soft rug beneath the desk and I’m most comfortable standing barefoot.

I’m so glad I now have the option to work standing up!  Now if only I can figure out how to drive like this??  😉

Have you ever tried a stand-up desk? How does it work for you?

Living the Dream. Weeping into a Mop Bucket like Cinderella. Same Thing, Right?

Well, it’s been exactly one month since the last time I posted, in the final days leading up to the opening of Barre & Soul Harvard Square.  Those next days were a blur of dirty hands, takeout food, and little sleep, as we hustled to get the studio open.

It would NOT have been possible without the generosity and hard work of some amazing people I’m lucky to have in my life, including my friends, kids, partner, the Barre & Soul staff, their parents (I’m not kidding) and more.  THANK YOU to everyone who helped make this happen!

help from friends

Fortunately, everything went perfectly and I also looked really good the whole time.

JUST KIDDING!  At 1AM the night before we opened, I was leaning over a mop in the middle of the yoga studio LITERALLY SOBBING LIKE A CHILD.   Bummer I didn’t manage to get a selfie, but it looked something like this:

sobbing child

(photo by jill greenberg)

We did manage to open, and the studio looks stunning. I especially love how it looks at night.

harvard square barre studio

yoga studio harvard square

There’s still a lot of decorating I want to do, like in the lobby (below),  but the details are coming together.

barre and soul hsq nightstring lights

barre studio harvard square

Classes are in full swing, and I’m working on the finishing touches.

ikea cart

(How crazy is that magnetic conveyor belt that lowers your cart down to the parking lot at IKEA?)

teal piano

Update: this piano still needs to happen. Anyone have a lead on a used one in or near Cambridge?

ogunquit

I’ve managed to sneak away for a few days here and there over the past month to visit my hometown of Ogunquit, Maine. I love it here. So so much.

Roof deck

Portsmouth NH Barre Studio

I also got to stop into the beautiful Portsmouth studio, which is lovely and I don’t visit enough.  Its 1 year anniversary is TODAY!

Elise Birthday

Speaking of birthdays, Elise turned 9!  She’s been doing gymnastics camp, had a friend visit from out-of-town for a week, sprained her ankle, made lots of messes, (cleaned up a small percentage of them), has been keeping me busy, and is generally a very sweet and adorable child…  We went shopping and found a few great back-to-school items I hope to share soon.  Now she and Roman are both on vacation and Jason and I are without kids for the next week or so… I’m hoping we might make a little getaway, at least for a few days!

goldie yoga

(A photo of my good side, obviously.)

Something I’ve really been wanting to share… I took a fantastic weekend yoga immersion with Goldie Graham the weekend after the Harvard Square studio opened.  The topic was sequencing and hands-on assists, and if you’re a yoga teacher, I would highly recommend it.  Goldie has a very genuine, plain-spoken way about her and a true passion for yoga that really comes through and that I found inspiring.

On the one hand, signing up for a weekend of anything was probably a crazy idea at such a busy time, but then again it was probably the only thing that could have gotten me to slow down.  On both Saturday and Sunday of that weekend, we practiced for about 90 minutes, which gave me the opportunity to hear what the wise little voice inside of me had to say.

First and foremost, I realized that I have worked hard, accomplished much, and need to chill the f*ck out and appreciate it!

I was also reminded of how important it is for a yoga teacher to maintain her own practice — Goldie mentioned that she practices 5-6 days a week! — and how little I’ve been doing that for myself.

I know, but had maybe forgotten, that I can do ANYTHING, but I can’t do EVERYTHING.

Ironically, the workshop that I took to keep my teaching inspired, ended up inspiring me to cut back on teaching for a while.

I am choosing to take some time to do the things I am MOST excited about right now, the things that nourish me creatively and make me feel self-expressed.  Right now, that’s writing my blog and creating the most beautiful yoga and barre communities ever through Barre & Soul — planning amazing programming and events, continuing to build and foster the dream team and to beautify our spaces.

I’m grateful that weekend gave me the pause to notice what I need and to get more of it!  I’m happy to be back to the blog and grateful to you for reading!

Till next time!

Andrea

self

 

 

This post is written in semi-delirium as we sprint to the finish line of opening day for Barre & Soul Harvard Square!  I thought I would check in with a quick photo-heavy update on what’s been happening, as well as share a little something you might find valuable.  First, the update:

Scout Cambridge

Thanks Scout Cambridge for the mention! So we didn’t open on the 13th as planned, but we will be open on Monday, July 20th, 2015!  That’s in about 4 days.

The studio is coming along beautifully, and Jason, our wonderful designer Samantha, and I have been all hands on deck making the final preparations.

Yoga Studio Harvard SquareThis never gets old…red rum

barre harvard square The first barre is up, and it works!teal piano

(Side note, Samantha had a brilliant idea that I’d love to try – finding an old piano and painting it teal for the yoga room.  If anyone has an old piano with a decent sound, please let me know!)barre studio harvard square

We even put this nice young man to work.  He wouldn’t smile for me, but I actually think he enjoyed this job.  Speaking of which, Roman is doing his first ever summer job!  Not washing windows, he’s a camp counselor.  I’m a proud mama!Harvard Square Barre Studio

My first sighting of the studio after dark stopped me in my tracks.  I can’t believe this is happening!

Yoga Teacher Training Boston

I also just want to mention how proud I am of our 2015 Yoga Teacher Training graduates in Melrose!

OK, so with all this excitement, do you wonder how the hell I get it all done?  Good!  Because I’d like to share with you My Top 4 Tips for Doing It All.

Doing It All

All you need to do is subscribe to the Fit Feminist Blog mailing list here, and I’ll email you a copy.

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Thanks for reading, and  I’ll see you in Harvard Square!

My Favorite ‘Secret’ Hidden Gems of Boston

hidden gems of boston

Spicy Margaritas, karaoke and hula hoops… these are a few of my favorite things…

 

Thanks MySecretBoston.com for asking me to share some “secret” Boston spots that I love!

 

Ready to discover some hidden gems and maybe find a new favorite of your own?

 

Read the article here!

 

 

Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway

Fear is Good by Steven Pressfield

 

This week, I’ve been sharing the above quote with my yoga and barre classes.

This quote comes from Steven Pressfield in The War of Art, a book that inspired me to start my business, Barre & Soul®.  I’m sharing it with you all this week in the hopes that it inspires you too.

When I decided to start Barre & Soul®, I did feel fear.  I am grateful someone asked me this question:

Which is worse: the fear of doing it, or the fear of not doing it?

Immediately, I knew.  It was on.

This has served me well each time I get ready to take a new risk.  When I laid eyes on the space for the new studio in Harvard Square (which is currently under construction,) I was overwhelmed by the fear of NOT creating a studio there, which is how I knew it had to be done.

andrea construction selfie

My most notable skill on the construction site: taking selfies.

Even though construction is stressful (is ‘predictably unpredictable’ an oxymoron? Because it describes life pretty perfectly at the moment…) and I have no way of knowing yet whether this studio will be a success, or whether it’ll just turn out to be the most expensive mistake of my life, I couldn’t NOT find out.

After all, what’s the worst that could happen?  (Answer: zombie apocalypse, obviously. And totally unrelated to the success or failure of my business.)

Ask yourself which is greater: the fear of doing it or the fear of not doing it.

Here’s to feeling the fear, and doing it anyway.

Love,
Andrea