Come Get Your Swerve on with Nikki Pebbles!

11:25 AM KyannaSimone 0 Comments

This Sunday I had the pleasure of taking one of the best cycle classes EVER and who other than to take this cycle class with than the one and only Nikki Pebbles. She’s a fellow Women’s Health Action Hero and just an all around amazing person. If you haven’t met her yet, you should!

This particular class was very interactive and honestly the most fun I’ve ever had in a cycle class. As you cycle, you’re playing a game to see who can rack up the most points. In this game we had three teams, red, blue and green, (My friends and I were on the red team,) and within each match up you have to try and keep your RPM in a certain zone to earn points for your team.

As the 45-minute class went on, the green team dominated the matches, being able to maintain the RPM and gain extra points for their team. There were a couple of times that the blue team came in first but the green team took it. Don’t even ask about the red team, we tried, we really did, but it didn’t happen.

In addition the cycling, there was also an upper body portion of the class. There were weights mounted on the side of the bike and we started to do various upper body exercises. I swear I didn’t realize how much I was neglecting my upper body until then. These weights were probably two or three pounds, maybe five, but my goodness trying to complete these upper body exercises and still spinning was pretty difficult, but I love a good challenge.

In the end the green team did come out on top. But that’s alright because there is always room for redemption and that’s what we plan to do, because lets face it, we’re going back, at least I am.
After the class was over, I chatted with Nikki and told her all of the wonderful things about her class. Seriously beauties, this class is one for the books, especially for us runners out there, it’s a great cross training tool.
Afterwards it was time to head out, but not without another photo with Nikki in front of the Swerve Fitness logo. I went back to my locker and gathered all of my things and quickly realized I was hungry, that’s how I know I was put through a good workout.
Although I didn’t eat right away, I had fun with my friends Aubrie and Tammy shopping for groceries at Trader Joe’s. We went back to Aubrie’s house and chatted and ate some amazing Thai food! Perfect way to end the day.
(myself, Aubrie and Tammy)

This class was great and I am certainly going to take it again with Nikki. I’m sure all of the other instructors are amazing, but lets face it, Nikki is amazing in her own light.

It was $30 for the class, but it was buy one, get one free so it’s technically $15, which is not bad at all. I seriously recommend taking this class if you’re in the NYC area or going to be at any point.

Swerve Fitness is located on 30 W 18th Street in the Flatiron District of NYC.

Until next time beauties!

The 30 Minute Jump Rope Workout

3:57 PM KyannaSimone 0 Comments

The 30 Minute Jump Rope Workout

One workout, 30 minutes and a body (that's YOU) is all you need to complete this workout. I actually love jump roping but get a chance to do it as often because I'm always running, but that's about to change. 

This jump rope I've used to complete this workout was provided to me by the wonderful people at Lipton Publicity. This jump rope is very light weight and efficient to carry around especially to the gym. But if you don't have time to hit the gym, this jump rope is also great for home use.
Now the workout, at first is a little challenging but once you complete it a couple of times I promise it becomes easier. Or, if it's too easy, there's other ways to make it more challenging. 
There's one of two ways to complete this workout, you can either a) time yourself for 30 minutes and when the timer stops that's it, or b) you can time yourself ONLY for the jump roping portion but the exercises in between you stop the timer and complete those. Keep in mind the workout will take a little more than 30 minutes to complete. 

This workout is a fun and challenging one to complete but it's great for cardio and strength training. If you want to add some weights you can, what you in between the jump rope "breaks" is totally up to you. 

If you find that you have gone through workouts one though six, please feel free to repeat. If you only want to isolate one muscle group, feel free to only do one of exercises each time you stop jumping. 

If you decide to try this workout leave let me know because I want to know if it was a challenge or if it was too easy. 

Until next time beauties. 

Running: The Group vs. Yourself - Part 2

11:48 PM KyannaSimone 0 Comments

It's part two of The Group or Yourself, if you didn't read part 1, you can read it HERE

In addition to running a couple of races with friends, I've ran more than enough races solo and of course it's a different feeling, but I didn't realize how much of a difference it is until I experienced the two back to back. 

This series isn't to tell you which method is "better," it's just to give some insight to both methods of running, try them out and hopefully you'll be successful in either one or both methods. 

1) More focus on your strides and gait.
2) Alone time to solve current issues/problems in your life. (Trust me) 
3) You're able to listen to your favorite music without no interruptions. 
4) If you have a time goal it's easier to focus on PR'ing a race. 
5) You'll feel accomplished when you cross the finish line and you're able to say "I did it," without the help of others. 
6) Your race, your pace. 
7) You'll be able to take notice of the people and places around you. 
8) Most times you'll get invited to a post race brunch/lunch. 

1) Negative thoughts can creep in your mind very quickly. 
2) Jealously of watching everyone run with others and you're alone can get the best of you. 
3) Traveling to and from races can get lonely if you don't make/have a travel buddy. 
4) Quitting might be a strong option if you become injured and don't have a friend/teammate on the course. 
5) There's no celebration party for you, just a shiny medal and you're on your way back home. 
6) You just might not enjoy the race as much as you should have if your friends were around. 

Running with yourself or with friends is totally your choice. There's no need to feel pressured to do one or the other and there's definitely no right or wrong answer. These are just some of the things that I've experienced running solo. 

Next week we'll conclude the series by talking about good running manners when you're solo and with a group. 

Until next time beauties! 

The Race I Now Hate: Staten Island Half

3:43 PM KyannaSimone 0 Comments

4:00am is the time my alarm goes off, but I'm not ready to get out of bed so I press snooze on my phone and head back to sleep. A couple of snoozes later I see its 4:30am, now I know it's time to get up and start getting ready. 

After the usual bathroom routine, I immediately turn on my TV to the Disney channel. Of course, Sunday mornings it's The Suite Life of Zack and Cody followed by Wizards of Waverley Place so I'm not complaining. 
My race day outfit was very simple, almost all black everything. I didn't really have any intentions of being seen or being colorful at this race so I kept it simple. 

By 5:55am I was out of my house and started my commute to the a Staten Island ferry. The ferry ran every 30 minutes, which meant I needed to be on an early ferry just incase something unexpected happens. 

With five minutes to spare I make it to the ferry terminal. The doors hadn't open yet but there was crowing around them. I make my way into the sea of people to get to the doors and then I see familiar faces, Amy and Kenny! 

We ride the ferry together and she graciously offered me half of her croissant. I was starving and I ate breakfast, but at that point hunger struck again. I chatted with Amy and Kenny for the rest of the ride as well as us checking our bags. From here, I met up with some of the BGR! ladies and we stretched together as well as chatted and headed over to the start line. 

Jillian and I decided that we were going to run this race together and that we did. We headed off to the port-o-potties and then waited in the corral to start. 
Miles 1 and 2: Very quickly Jillian and I noticed that starting in an "earlier" corral was a different vibe than starting in a later corral. The runners seems very VERY focused and were not interested in chatting. I mean, this doesn't mean we were going to chat with other runners, it just meant that if we wanted to we knew that wasn't going to happen. Five minutes in we saw a fluid station but didn't stop, we just kept going. I noticed that my left knee was starting to hurt again at mile two and the first thing that went into my head was "man I really have to get this checked out." 

Miles 3 and 4: Jillian and I were still keeping up with the "earlier runners" we realized that more and more runners were being released from the corrals and they were catching up to us, which was fine, we really weren't running for time or anything, just running to get through the course. At this time I saw my friend Charlene and she was keeping up with the 2:00 hour pace team. 

Miles 5 and 6: Around mile five we started to see the other runners on our left side on a Boardwalk, which means that's where we were going to end up soon. At mile six we made a left turn and passed an empty fluid station that only had about 15 GU's on the table, no water, no Gatorade, nothing. We kept running and we're on the boardwalk. 

Miles 7 and 8: My leg was really starting to bother me and running on the boardwalk didn't help it at all. I tried readjusting my positioning on the boardwalk but that didn't help as well, I just tried to run/walk through it. At mile eight you can tell there was a water station but again, there was nothing or anyone manning it, everything was packed up and the garbage was off to the side, we couldn't believe it, we shook our heads and kept moving. 

(Mile 8 water station) 

Miles 9 and 10: The two miles that wore me out, after coming off of that boardwalk, the hills at mile nine were ridiculous. At the first hill Jillian and I met three different runners and we chatted with them going up the first hill, we were not trying to run up a hill after coming off of that boardwalk. Then the second even bigger hill came as well, Jillian ran up the hill and I walked it, I knew with my knee pain I wouldn't be able to run of the hill so I tried to conserve as much energy as I can for the flatter parts of the course. 

Miles 11 and 12: My pace slowed down a lot and at times I thought of heading over to the medical tent to quit, but no matter how many times I've tried I couldn't bring myself to walk to that tent. I was trying to keep up with Jillian at this point and it pained me to know that I was holding her back, but I tried anyway. At a point inside mile 11, I stopped, striped to stretch my knee out, anything to ease the pain, but it didn't work. I ended up crying because I felt like I've failed myself and everyone around me, I passed the medical tent already so I couldn't really turn back, I could hear people asking Jillian if they should call the medic for me, but I shook my head. Soon after the same people we met at mile nine came saw me bent over at mile 11, crying. Th spoke to me, told me that I was going to finish this and they weren't going to leave me behind. We started walking and I told Jillian to go ahead because I didn't want to hold her up anymore than I've already have and she did. My new running pals Jose and Gigi carried me through the rest of this race. Of course mile 12 only had Gatorade and no water, go figure. 

Mile 13/Finish: Phone is dead and my watch is going, I know it's a 3 hour plus finish and until today I still don't know the exact time because it's my worse half to date. I guess I'll take a look at it at some point in life, but I'm utterly disappointed at my failed knee. I received my medal and went to pick up my bag and met up with the BGR! ladies. 

It's safe to say this is going to be my last race for awhile, I'm currently in the process of strengthening my knee and the surrounding muscles in order for me to become a more efficient runner. Hopefully in doing this, it will also make me a faster runner and I'll be able to achieve that PR goal I've been looking for. 

(After the race being annoyed)

(Jillian just tagged me in the picture on Facebook as I was writing this) 

Until next time beauties! 

Running: The Group vs. Yourself - Part 1

3:48 PM KyannaSimone 0 Comments

During the past couple of weeks I've had so many races that covered a variety of distances, anywhere from a one-mile race to a half marathon.  And each race was a different experience for me. Well clearly the distances where different, but I'm taking about in terms of who I ran with. Either alone, or with a group of people. 

The last time I ran with someone actually side by side was the Brooklyn half in 2014. It was a wonderful experience but something I haven't experienced in awhile and honestly something I didn't care to experience again. To me, I saw all these people running together and I always thought "what about timing?" "What about if one person runs faster/slower than the other." Too many questions and so little experience but at the Bronx 10 Mile, I understood. 

1) You'll always have people there to support you when you're feeling like quitting.
2) Conversations are constant. And after an hour, you'll need it.
3) Most likely you and your team are going through the same motions through running.
4) You don't notice how far you actually ran, while your running. 
5) Sometimes the finishing time isn't important and you're running for fun.
6) Sometimes the finishing time is important and you're looking to PR and so is everyone in your group. 
7) Your group is your own personal pace team. 
8) You'll hear great stories from your friends that you've never heard before. 

1) You might feel like your holding someone back or someone might be holding you back.
2) Sometimes the constant chatter gets annoying. 
3) You don't want to let your group down. 
4) Everyone might have the energy you don’t at a certain point.
5) You might not be able to focus on your breathing or thoughts.
6) Running with music is not happing so just save your battery and track your run via whichever app you use.
7) You can’t leave your group members behind without feeling like a total jerk later on.

Either way beauties, there are a lot of things to consider when you want to run with a group of people during races. Find out if it's for you and give it a shot, remember to find a group of people who either run your pace or slightly faster than you, that would give you the extra push you need to keep going.

Next Tuesday it's The Group vs. Yourself - Part 2. That will cover the the "yourself" side of this topic. So get ready. 

Until next time beauties. 

I Ran the Diva's Half Marathon!

3:52 PM KyannaSimone 0 Comments

The alarm goes off at 4:00am and I know it's time to get up. However, I hit the snooze button and don't get up until 4:30am, now the fun begins. It's the normal routine, using the bathroom, washing my face and brushing my teeth.

I turn on the light in my room as well as my living room light. The TV goes on as well because I need to watch something before I head out the door; I can't get ready in silence. Of course I stop at Disney Channel and I caught the end of The Suite Life of Zack and Cody and Wizards of Waverley place was next. Good enough for me.

I get together all of my things and start putting them together, pants, bra, lipstick, socks, sneakers, basically all the things that a "diva" needs. Prior to this race I originally planned to wear just the sports bra and the matching pants, but because the weather dropped drastically I had to find a long sleeved shirt to wear.

I made my usual peanut butter sandwich while doing my hair in my final steps to getting ready to leave the house. I had to meet my friend downstairs to be on the road by 6am. This race is located in Long Island but of course I’ve never been here before so we wanted to get a good start on things before we ended up hitting heavy traffic. 

30 minutes later we arrived at Eisenhower Park, the location of this race. I was dropped off and went to find where I can find bag check. At bag check, I met up with Berelize, who had my bib and all race day essentials, including my fabulous pink tutu and I couldn’t wait to put on with the rest of my outfit.  I dropped my stuff off and headed over to the start line. 
While waiting for 8:15am to start the race, I used the bathroom three times. I was feeling super nervous and as I watched the different 5K waves go by, I wanted to jump in and just be content with the 5K, but then I quickly realized that paying $110 for a 5K isn’t logical and I was stuck with the half marathon. 

Before I knew it, it was time to start running and three minutes in, I knew I was in trouble.

Miles 1 and 2: Three minutes into mile one and the outside of my left knee was killing me and immediately I had to change up my gait but it was hard to do. I immediately told myself this race was going to be difficult if I'm already feeling pain. The course made a left turn and with a little more running I was at mile 2. My leg was still bothersome but I still was in the process of changing my gait. 

Miles 3 and 4: All I am seeing are trees and people at the sides of the road cheering for us. 30 minutes in, I was finally able to figure out how I needed to run in order to complete this race. Changing my gait gave me confidence in that I could finish this race. So much so that I no longer felt the pain in my knee. If I could keep up like this, I know I can finish this race with my goal time. 

Miles 5 and 6: This is where I started to become annoyed. In mile four I was running on the highway, which was the coolest thing ever because a whole section of the highway was shut down just for us runners. However, it seemed like never ending turns, which started to put pressure on my knee again. Within all of this, I was still maintaining good timing with being on track with my goal time. Also, I got really hot between these two miles so I ran with my long sleeved shirt on my neck at mile five and took it off at mile 6. 

Miles 7 and 8: Mindless miles, because nothing out of the ordinary happened, no magic, nothing. I just passed the mile markers with no thought and kept going. Listening to my Nike+ app, I was still on track with my pace. That's all I needed to hear. 

Miles 9 and 10: If I wasn't annoyed with the course before, I was surely annoyed now. To my right side was just trees and to my left were a bunch of houses with cars parked out front. I wanted to try and appreciate the scenery but I couldn't because there was nothing to see. I began to become bored with the course, for the first time in my race career I was tired, sleepy and kept asking myself "Can I run and sleep at the same time?" "Is this possible?" I couldn't believe it. My leg began hurting again and even with the changed gait I was in pain. I dipped a little in pace at mile nine, but completely lost pace at mile 10. 

Miles 11 and 12: I no longer cared for my pace. Not after what happened at mile 11. I thought "two miles to go, great." I saw the boa and tiara station and changed my tune to "this is a horrible place for this, why not at mile 12?" If that didn't make it worse once I made the right turn to what I thought was the boa and tiara station, there was a parking lot, where we had to run to the other end, make a right turn back down to the other end of the parking lot and make a left to the boa and tiara station. You could tell all of these little turns were just ways to make up the distance of a half marathon. This frustrated me and with the frustration I slowed down, then I stopped caring all together. While at mile 12 I realized I've been on the course for 2:44:35. "There goes my goal of 2:45:00, lets just go for anything less than three hours." 

Mile 13/Finish: 2:56:19 and I was headed to the medical tent. I must have looked like I was in pain because the medic immediately asked me what was wrong and ushered me into the tent. I was given an ice bag for my knee and I sat down for about five minutes before getting up and getting my medal. While getting my medal, I also got a handful of snacks, some champagne and a chocolate chip cookie. 

I enjoyed myself to an extent. I wished the course was a little better and all those unnecessary turns weren't added. If I decided to do this race next year, it probably wouldn't be the half, I think I'll just do the 5K or I might just do the half in Temecula, CA to see what's the hype about, but this particular half in Long Island, no. 

I'm proud that I was able to hold my pace until mile 10, that spoke volumes to me, that I'm am closer and closer to achieving my goal of 2:45:00, but I'm not quite making it yet, I'll keep practicing and training to make sure the next half I'm going to train for will be a 2:45:00 finish time. 

I'm still debating on whether or not I should run the Staten Island half on Sunday. I picked up my bib and I have an outfit planned out but I don't know if I want to run it yet, I guess I have to make a decision between today and tomorrow. 

Until next time beauties.  

The Diva's Half Marathon is TOMORROW!

10:23 PM KyannaSimone 0 Comments

Beauties! The race that I've been training for is TOMORROW. I am super sad because I had a whole outfit planned for this race but because of the weather, I had to change it up just a little. It's ok maybe for another race I'll be able to wear this outfit as planned, but that wont be until next summer.

Anyway, I just wanted to give a quick heads up the night before. it's just SUPER COLD right now and I don't know how I am going to make it through, but I guess I'll figure this out. I'm currently in bed watching Halloween Wars on the food network, thinking about eating a cheeseburger tomorrow and hoping that I am going to be warm enough. 

I have a 4:00am wake up time, but I'm probably not going to get out of the bed until 4:30am and then it's off to the start of the race. You beauties know I'll Instagram my journey tomorrow so please be on the lookout and hopefully I'll be on periscope also at KissTheRunner. 

Side note: my toes are SUPER COLD. I need some socks. 

Ok seriously now, I am going to get some sleep. 

Until next time beauties.