Friday, January 19, 2018

Finding Gratitude and Self Love


Photography: Ella B Photo
Blouse: WHBM (ON SALE!) c/o / Jacket: Zara (ON SALE FOR $30!) / Jeans: AG / Bag: Rebecca Minkoff / Rings: Free People / Boots: Gianni Bini (ON SALE and comes in three colors) / Lips: Pucker & Pout - First Love
All week I've been going crazy with taking SoulCycle, and riding in class has become exercise therapy to me. Pedaling my legs to the beat of the music mixed with inspirational talks has me coming back everyday for more. This week my favorite instructor Hayes talked about gratitude, and finding something you grateful for. We think about so much about what we don't have in our life that we forget about the amazing things that we currently have. 

This really struck home for me because I find myself comparing my life to others whether it be financially, my body, progression with my businesses, my photography, my marriage, and where I am in this stage of life. 2018 is going to be a big year for me, and made it my mission to do some soul searching to better me as a person. My first step in my self help mission is to write down everyday on my calendar a) what I am grateful for, and b) a characteristic I love about myself. 

Today I am grateful for my body. Through physical activity in my everyday life I allow myself to block out time dedicated to only me, and not focus on the everyday stresses of life. My body has become the vessel that allows me to not only work on being physically stronger, but mentally as well. 

Today what I love about myself is my ability to go above and beyond for those who I love. I consider myself to be a caring person, and will be there for a friend no matter what. My big heart has allowed me to build so many strong friendships, and let so many people into my life.

I challenge you to write down these two things everyday, and try it out for a month to see how it improves your perspective on life. What are you most grateful for today, and what do you love about yourself?

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Tap It Back In Style - Favorite Spin Wear

1/2/3/4/5/6/7/8/9/10/11/12/13/14

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Workout Wednesday: Brand Feature Splits 59

Photography: Ella B Photo
Sweater: Splits 59 c/o / Leggings: Splits 59 c/o / Shoes: Nike / Hat: Nordstrom (similar here and here) / Bag: Pure Barre / Lips: Pucker & Pout - 1x First Love 1x Cappuccino 1x Bombshell
If you have been following me on my Insta stories then you have noticed that I have been traveling all over Dallas to try out different workouts. I'm usually a create of habit with my workouts, but for some reason I have been enjoying mixing things up. I'm thinking about doing my top 5 studios in Dallas that are on Class Pass as a "Workout Wednesday" post. Thoughts?

With trying out so many different studios this has been my daily uniform. I've never been one to buy crops, and I am all about the full length leggings. I go for the full length to not only keep me warm, but to also make me looks taller (yes it makes us short gals look longer #shortieproblems).  Since Splits 59 is one of my favorite activewear brands I was thrilled when they sent me these beautiful merlot leggings. If you have never tried Splits 59 then girl you are missing out because I'm obsessed. Did I mention that these have a high waist.....

When high waisted leggings became the dominate waist style in the activewear industry I hated it at first. My initial distaste for the high waist came from my waist looking too bunchy when I wore a normal tank over it, or tried to do a front tuck with a muscle tee. The more I wore high waisted leggings the more I fell in love with them. Whenever I go take class at Soul Cycle you can't catch me without my high waisted leggings while dancing on the bike. 

Another piece that you'll see me constantly in is the pull over sweater. Since it's been so cold in Dallas I've been working out and teaching in the pullovers to give me that extra sweat and calorie burn. I honestly wish this pullover from Splits came in more colors because I would buy them all! It's the perfect length for a high waisted leggings, and is so soft against your skin. 

Monday, January 15, 2018

Keeping Busy With Girl Dates

Photography: Ella B Photo
Top: Caslon / Sweater: Gifted (similar here, here, here, and here) / Jeans: AG / Bag: Vici (similar here) / Boots: Frye (old similar here) / Hat: old (similar here and here) / Rings: Free People / Choker: Baublebar c/o / Lips: Pucker & Pout - Caramel Apple
Happy Martin Luther King day everyone!!! Hopefully you all have the day off work, and can be enjoying a three day weekend. Unfortunately I'm going to be working all day, and Todd is pulling another 36 hour shift. 

January is going to be a rough month for the hubs since the Oral and Maxillofacial department is going to be understaffed this month. This means that he is going to have to do three 36 hour on call shifts a week on top of his normal work. With us being 6 months into his program I've learned that I need to keep myself busy on the days when he's gone.  Recently I've been getting really into trying different workout studios on the days he's gone, and inviting other Pure Barre girls to attend to make it a "girl date." 

When Todd was on call over the weekend I went out to dinner with a friend on Saturday, and then we did another girl date on Sunday where we did back to back sessions of Pure Barre then Soul Cycle. 

Friday, January 12, 2018

Grey x Grey

Photography: Ella B Photo
Dress: HM / Jacket: BLANKNYC (also here) / Bag: WHBM (similar here and here) c/o / Hosiery: Commando / Boots: Marc Fisher / Lips: Pucker & Pout: 1x First Love 1x Cappuccino 1x Bombshell
The weather in Dallas has been so crazy lately. One week its 18 degrees, and then the next week it hits upper 60s. On the weeks where it has been freezing I've been living in sweater dresses. Sweater dresses are a) so warm, b) flattering, and c) so easy to throw on and go. My dad got me this dress from HM for Christmas, and it's so cute to wear around town. To give the dress a little more edge I paired it with this suede motto jacket that was another Christmas from my dad. 

I want to add some more sweater dresses to the wardrobe. If you have bought one recently that you love drop the link in the comments :)

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Workout Wednesday: SoulCycle Review


If you have been following my Instagram stories for the past few weeks then you probably would have seen that I have gotten into taking SoulCycle classes. 

What is SoulCycle? SC is an indoor spin studio that incorporates cardio and strength training to a rhythmic beat for 45 minutes per class. All the lights in the studio are turned off, and you do the entire class in a candlelit studio. The class is driven by a motivating instructor, and playlists that are curated by the instructor themselves. 

When I first moved to Dallas I was so excited to see that there was multiple SC locations available in my city since I have been seeing it all over social media. I first found out about SC when I saw that one of my old high school friends was teaching in New York, and have always been intrigued to see what this party on a bike was like. I mentioned to one of the Pure Barre barretenders Anne Elizabeth that I always wanted to try SC, and she then invited me to come take class with her. Little did I know that this girl date would turn into my latest fitness obsession.

Arrival

For my first class Anne and I decided to take Hayes 6 am, and was excited to start my morning off with a bang. I purchased the new client deal of the first class being $20 vs $30. When I arrived at the studio I loved how the lobby was bright and with motivating quotes on the wall that immediately woke me up for my 6 am class. The studio contains lockers for your belongings, and locker rooms that have awesome amenities such as showers, hair ties, tampons, q tips, razors, hair dryers, and etc. When you go into the studio someone comes to help you set up your bike #lifesaver.  There's a part of class where you use light weights for an upper body workout. Your bike is already equipped with weights, but you can always swap them for a heavier set by the instructor podium before class starts.

What to Wear

I'm usually not the person to wear just a bra when working out, but you quickly learn that you want to shed the layers once the sweat starts dripping to the beat of the music. Wear tight pants such as capris, sports bra, socks, tank, and definitely keep the hair pulled back in a pony tail. Don't worry about bringing special shoes because you can rent them at the front desk for $3.

Terminology

Soulcycle is know for their signature the "tap back" where you start out of the saddle, and use your core to pull your hips over the saddle. Moves like this make the class more challenging and fun. You do variations where you tap back 1 count or tap it back for 2 then slide it forward for 2.

Some other terminology that will be helpful for your first class is knowing your positions on the bike.

The first position is where you rest your hands on the handlebar center. In this position you'll be sitting in the saddle, and if the choreography calls for it you might be doing pushups here.

Second position is where you rest your hands on the back corners of the handle bars, and your seat will either be in or out of the saddle.

Third position is when you are completely out of the saddle, and your hands are on the ends of the handlebars.

The Class

The instructor typically starts off by asking if anyone is new to SC, asks for their name, and proceeds to breakdown the basics of SC. SoulCyle utilizes the beat of the music to create "dancing" on the bike. You start off with a warm up, hills, sprits, and then throughout the class you vary the resistance depending on the section. During the tail end of class you add in the weight work which is very similar to what I do at Pure Barre. You might feel like 3 pounds is nothing, but when you do tons of reps of an arm exercise your arms want to scream for dear life. Class is finished off with a cool down, and then a stretch while burning anywhere between 300-600 calories.

The Soul Vibe

As I was "tapping back" throughout class I felt like I was in a sexy music video with everyone being in their 20-30s. Literally you guys... it was a sexy class. Everyone half naked, in sync, sweating, and feeding off each others energy made me that more energized to push through class. One thing you need to know about me is if you give me a killer beat mixed with a challenge then Jessica is a happy camper. SC is musically driven, and utilizes the beat to create synchrony among the riding pack.

SC is all about your personal journey, and what you want out of class that day. The instructors cue motivation throughout class making you think that your 45 minute session is a form of workout therapy. You find yourself letting go, dedicating 45 minutes to better yourself, and feeling more comfortable in your own skin. One of the things that I loved during my first class is when Hayes said something like "It's not about working toward perfection its about working toward the best form of you."

Final Thoughts

I am absolutely OBSESSED with SoulCycle, and if you are looking for a workout that your kick your morning off right then this is for you. It is a bit pricey, but it's cheaper than therapy ;)

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Velvet


Photography: Ella B Photo
Dress: Shein (comes in 2 other colors!) c/o / Bag: WHBM c/o (similar here) / Earrings: Baublebar c/o / Boots: Vince Cameo (old similar here) / Lips: Pucker & Pout - Roseberry
Stopping by for a quick post on an outfit I wore a couple weeks ago when shooting with Ella. Can you believe that this dress is only $33?!!!

Make sure you tune in tomorrow for an awesome "Workout Wednesday" review. See you tomorrow. 
 

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