Body Pump 89- Music & Review

I used to love getting the BodyPump release in the snail mail & now that it’s gone digital it’s just not quite as exciting. Totally forgot I’ve had the 89 release waiting for me since February 15th! Oh well, finally took a listen tonight & thought I would share the playlist. Here are the songs & a brief sneak peek of what to expect!

1. Warm-Up “Not Alone” Dane Rumble feat. Jupiter Project


No bicep warm-up at all, that’s kind of weird.

2. Squats “Raise Those Hands” R3hab & Bassjackers


I think people will love this squat track. Especially the younger crowd.

3. Chest “Where Did The Party Go” Fall Out Boy


Classic chest track song. I kind of like it, pretty catchy! Beat is pretty slow which means singles will feel harder. Don’t think it is the most challenging chest track, but I could be fooled.

4. Back “Me & You” Nero


No clean & presses. First time in 20+ BodyPump releases that I haven’t seen a clean & press. A lot more leg involvement & pretty heavy on the deadlifts, which I think is a good thing!

5. Triceps “Applause” Lady Gaga


Original version of this song! Still think this is a great song to work-out to, even if it isn’t new anymore. Skimmed the choreography notes & already know I LOVE this track. Lots of tricep push-ups & dips= intense work!

6. Biceps “When You Were Young” The Killers


:) Love The Killers! Such an old & awesome song. Over 5 minutes of bicep work though? Yikes. Plate & bar work mix it up.

7. Lunges “Burn” Ellie Goulding


Have already told you all this is a great work-out song in previous posts! Very excited that Les Mills has been using Ellie (& FLorence) in the last few releases. They are a perfect fit. Completely different tempos for this lunge track. Excited to teach it!

8. Shoulders “True Hardstyler (Silver Nikan Radio Edit)” Brooklyn Bounce & DJ Zealot


I’m a fan of starting with 2 long sets of push-ups. This is a hard track. Thought I hated this song the first 2 minutes, but then I decided it was going to be really fun with a crowd.

9. Core “La La La” Naughty Boy feat. Sam Smith


I like it. Fun, cool beat. 265 million+ views on youtube, should I have heard this before? A little toned down which is a good way to start to wind down. Ending with a good hover (plank) and people never seem to like that for some reason.

10. Cool-down “Radioactive” Imagine Dragons


I don’t know about you, but I don’t think of this as a cool-down song, more of a get pumped for the day song. Kind of fun to end class on an upbeat & intense note though.

Overall:  Impressed with the music. All original, no odd covers (remember Adele?). I loved BodyPump 88 & I think I will 89 will be awesome as a whole too.

Anybody done BodyPump 89 yet? What did you think?

LA Marathon 2014 Last Minute Tips

It’s only 3 days away now!

1. Water (obviously)

Now is a good time to really focus on proper hydration all week long. The trick to drinking enough water is literally always having a full water bottle in front of you. Just like many people munch mindlessly, you’re pretty likely to sip mindlessly if you have water right in front of you all the time.

-always have water in the car

-at your desk:


-with each meal

I count sparkling water, black tea, & the occasional juice towards my liquid goals. I would not count coffee.

Lot’s of free apps to help you keep track of your hydration. I like this one:



Don’t over hydrate on race morning! It’s pretty much just uncomfortable & has as many health risks as being dehydrated.

 2. Eat right ( & more)

-focus on nutrient dense food (vegetables, fruit, whole grains, the good stuff!)



-don’t try any new foods the day before the marathon or on race day. You don’t want to risk having any stomach/digestive problems

3. Stretch

I scheduled myself to go to yoga 3X this week. Already skipped class #1, hopefully I will make the other 2…


4. Sleep


I’ve been tracking my sleep with my fitbit. Hoping to get solid 8 hours the next few nights. You likely won’t sleep well the night before race day & go-time is usually a 3am alarm. Adrenaline can get you through one sleepless night but having solid rest all week makes that achievable.

5. Find some inspiring music.

Spice up your playlist! I’m weird & can overplay a song like no one else. Marathon #1 this song did the trick:

Marathon #2, this song did the trick:

We’ll see what I keep hitting back for this year. Pretty much all of these songs will be on the playlist. I like to have a massive playlist so if something isn’t doing the trick I just skip to the next song.

 6. Imagine the finish line!


I hope I make it this year. I have accepted the fact that I did not really train & am likely going to hurt like hell & be very slow. Just hoping to cross the line! Imagining a successful race really helps get your mind in the right place. I am a firm believer that running a marathon is 95+% mental.

Adding to my Running Playlist

Hey blog world. It’s been a while. My marathon playlist is 130 songs, 9 hours and 40 minutes. A bit excessive. Here are some new additions that seem to put me in the mood to run. Warning: I don’t watch more than 3 seconds of any of these videos, just enough to know it’s the right song. I’m not really sure of the content you may be watching. Might be weird. Pretty sure the first music video is, based on the 3 seconds I watched.

1. Aviation High- Semi Precious Weapons

Not sure how I feel about the rest of the EP, but this song is great.

2. Elastic Heart (feat. The Weeknd & Diplo)- Sia

Entire soundtrack from Hunger Games is worth getting. Devil May Cry- The Weeknd, Mirror-Ellie Goulding are favorites to name a couple.

3. Thunder Clatter- Wild Club

Such a happy song.

4. Radioactive (feat. Kendrick Lamar)- Imagine Dragons

You can buy this song on iTunes now. Not quite the same effect as the live performance, but still awesome.

5. It’s About Time- Young the Giant

Love this song. Which reminds me that the song “My Body” by Young the Giant is also a great work-out song.

6. Bridges- Broods

This might not seem like a running song at first but something about it makes me want to move.

7. The Man- Aloe Blacc

Big song.

Happy running!

Grand Canyon: Hiking Rim-to-River-to-Rim

Ever since I hiked the Grand Canyon last summer, I’ve been itching for another endurance challenge. For someone who {generally} follows rules, I enjoy breaking them sometimes. The more I heard the warning NOT to hike to the river & back in one day, the more I wanted to do it.


Sunrise on the South Kaibab Trailhead.

A few added challenges to the mix:

1. Sunrise at 7am, Sunset at around 5pm which = only 10 hours of daylight.

2. I was by myself.

3. Most water was turned off for the winter- typically the Bright Angel Trail has 3 major water stations.

I had heard that the 16.5 mile hike could take over 12 hours so I was already a little bit nervous for only 10 hours of daylight but I decided I didn’t want to leave any earlier than 7am only to be hiking alone in the dark, in the off-season. I’d really rather not run into a mountain lion.


South Kaibab Trail- 7 miles (4,780 ft drop in elevation).

I hiked down the South Kaibab trail which is notoriously steeper (see above switchbacks). I got to the bottom in 2 hours flat which made me feel at ease with my decision to not leave until 7am.


The bottom of the Grand Canyon is seriously one of the most spectacular places. It is an entirely different world than the top and most people never make it down there. The Colorado River looks deceivingly calm & serene in this photo but it is a powerful & freezing cold river.


After crossing the Colorado River twice via the Black Bridge & Silver Bridge I hiked on the River Trail for about a mile until it connected with the Bright Angel trail. Hiking uphill in sand is demoralizing.

Most people decide to hike down the South Kaibab Trail & up the Bright Angel trail. Main reason being the South Kaibab trail has no water at all while the Bright Angel has between 1-3 water stations depending on the season. Being by myself, I also chose this route because the South Kaibab trail has far more people and I strategically wanted to be on the crowded trail when I was tired. If anything were to happen, at least I could find help fairly easily.


Obligatory selfie, right after finishing the Devil’s Backbone. This brutal stretch of the hike lets you get through a lot of elevation in a short stretch. I had to have several layers of clothing with me since there was about a 40 degree temperature swing from the time I started to the time I finished. I was comfortable in a tank top for most of the hike up- although most people looked at me like I was a little bit crazy.


About halfway up the Bright Angel Trail- another 9.5 miles up to the rim from river ( & 4,380 ft in elevation gain). It is one of the most iconic trails in the world, and for good reason.


The last time I hiked the Grand Canyon it was late June so I could not get over the beautiful fall colors I observed this time in November. This section of the trail is close to Indian Garden which has an abundance of vegetation because of a creek.


These hiking boots have got to go. I felt some hot spots pretty much right away. Luckily I brought a lightweight pair of shoes to change into.


I really like this brand jerky. I surprisingly wasn’t that hungry but knew I needed the energy so I stopped for the 1st time after about 11.5 miles to eat some food (& change shoes!).


These Merrell minimalist shoes weight less than one pound & saved my feet. The Bright Angel Trail is dusty and somewhat rocky, but heavy duty hiking boots are not necessary, especially if your feet are starting to bother you.


There are only a few of ways into & out of the canyon: your own two feet, a mule, and a helicopter. This helicopter was making trips back & forth between 3 mile Rest House and some other site, pretty cool to watch.

I made it back to the South Rim before 2pm which means I hiked the 16.5 miles in less than 7 hours.


Next adventure: Rim-to-Rim (in a day). Need a friend and a ride for that trip though!

Here is a random assortment from life’s eats lately:


Roasted Seasonal Veggies + Romaine Salad 


I LOVE seasonal menus. Food is seasonal! Lovely local food served here at Sobo’s in Salisbury, MD.


Found the best coffee place on the way to work in Arizona. And oh my goodness, the barista is probably the jolliest guy I have ever met. So nice at 5:30am because I am certainly not that jolly.


These were yummy. I spilled most of the bag getting out of my car so that was disappointing but I would certainly buy them again.


One of the infinite reasons I love life in southern California. I am sitting outside in November in a t-shirt, sipping a moscow mule (one of my favorite cocktails). It had a real candied ginger in it too which was delicious!


Loved the decor of this restaurant. All open air.


French toast with pumpkin butter & maple syrup. I had 3 slices and let the others at the table have the rest.


Great company makes for a great meal! Out with a few people in Long Beach.


Caesar Pizza. So good. Really good pizza crust too, I’m pretty picky about that.


Up close & personal for you. IPA in the background.


And finally a really delicious chopped salad. So colorful & pretty.