Burn Fat with Sprint Training

sprint-trainingSo I've been sprinting.  One of my new year's fitness resolutions was to begin sprinting, because it burns fat and encourages muscle growth, so it begun.  Do you sprint?  My new trainer, Jarrett Hahn, Owner of M.O.V.E Fitness & Performance in Hoboken, NJ discusses the benefits to sprint training and lays down some ground rules to ensure you're getting the most out of your workout.  After all, we don't have time to waste.

"One of the main benefits of sprinting is that it gets your nervous system fired up, releases endorphins and growth hormone, and activates muscle fibers that would otherwise be dormant," Hahn explained.

Make Sure Your Form is On Point

Form and technique is just as important in sprinting as in any other exercise or movement. Everything from the start phase, to the acceleration phase, to the maximum speed phase.  Turns out, I wasn't sprinting correctly until I was coached.  Here's a video on the proper form.

Use a Heart Rate Monitor

Wearing a heart rate monitor during sprinting, can be very beneficial if you’re looking to  shed excess body fat and widen your aerobic window.  It helps to get your body into an anaerobic state of exercise, which is short duration, high intensity exercise that lasts anywhere seconds up to around two minutes.  (For example, I've been doing a series of 15 second sprints to increase my heart rate, then allowing it to come down to 120 bpm before doing another.)

After two minutes, the body’s aerobic system kicks in. The anaerobic effect happens in the body when we exert ourselves at 84% of our max heart rate and above. The residual effects include: burning more calories at rest, developing strength, an increased VO2 max, a more lean and defined body, and a more efficient use of time.

Take it Easy

I've been doing a sprint training routine for 10-20 minutes per day three days a week. "You want to get right to the edge of that breaking point and call it a day. It is best to start on the more conservative side to avoid injury or overreaching," Hahn warns.

Kate Upton's Fitness Secret


Deemed People's "Sexiest Woman," Kate Upton seems to have it all.  And while she can thank God for blessing her with those curves, her trainer David Kirsch, is partially responsible for the rest.  So how does the super model tighten and tone?  With platypus walks.  Yep, she walks around like a duck and you can, too.  Here's the how-to.


  1.  Grab a medicine ball with both hands and extend your arms overhead.
  2. Squat in a sitting position with your knees over your toes and your butt sticking back as far as possible.  Yes, stick it out!
  3. Engage your core and walk forward, pushing off through each heel.
  4. Walk back and forth across your room until you can't anymore.

That's it!  It sounds so easy, but if you try it, you'll quickly feel the burn and realize why it works so well for Kate Upton.  Let me know how you do.  Hey, we'll be in bikinis again in no time!

Indulging on the Quantum of the Seas, Our Way

royal-caribbbean-quantum-of-the-seasDid you see my Instagram pics from last weekend?  I was on a cruise!  That's right, Royal Caribbean launched a new ship, Quantum of the Seas, and invited Joe and I to set sail for two nights to check it out.  Let me tell you, I've been on Royal Caribbean cruises before with my family, but this ship is a game changer – especially for people like us – who like to indulge on vacation sans the calories.  Here's what I mean...

royal-caribbbean-quantum-of-the-seasIt's the first smart ship – ever!  I had wifi the entire time out to sea so I was able to Instagram my journey.  While that's a huge plus, one thing that I always loathe about cruises is the inevitable weight gain.  Twenty-four hour buffets, ice cream bars and bathing suits.  Not my style.  The new Royal Caribbean Quantum of the Seas however, was a place Joe and I were able to indulge in relaxing and staying fit.

royal-caribbbean-quantum-of-the-seasMorning FlyWheel classes were followed by hours at the spa.  Yes, the ship actually had a FlyWheel studio, which was one of my favorite parts.  Overlooking the ocean, the gym had many fitness classes you could sign up for like TRX and more.  We didn't miss a beat.

royal-caribbbean-quantum-of-the-seasThe Vitality Spa offered everything from Botox to massages.  I indulged in a facial and massage, because with two days at sea, what else is a girl to do?  The massage was wonderful.

royal-caribbbean-quantum-of-the-seasWhen it came to eating, of course being that it was all inclusive, we could have been disgusting.  However, we found a juice bar and really enjoyed the restaurants the cruise had to offer.   One of them, Devinly Decadence, is run by "Biggest Loser" winner and chef, Devin Alexander.  She tailored the menu to ensure nothing is over 500 calories.


Of course, the wine was flowing and deserts were abundant, but a healthy lifestyle didn't have to be sacrificed on this ship.  The Quantum of the Seas is our kind of cruise.

Barre3: Three Steps to A Leaner Bod

barre3_manhattan-e1389754908850I woke up 24 hours after taking my first barre class, and my legs were sorer then they’ve ever been... and I played college soccer. Why try barre you may ask?  I had the privilege of trying out a Barre3 class before it opened to the public for BeautySweetSpot (no, Jeannine didn't make me) at their new Manhattan flagship studio in the West Village, taught by the Founder, Sadie Lincoln.  Wouldn't you?  

As I walked in to the pristine second floor village studio, I was pretty intimidated, but my anxious feelings were quickly put at ease thanks to the incredibly friendly (and fit!) staff.  Unlike other barre classes I've heard about, Barre3 consists of a three-step formula. Step one is based on position holds that work your muscles and adjust your alignment. Step two involves controlled, one-inch movements which helps increase core strength and warm up the body and step three is a cardio blast with large dynamic movements. You repeat this method throughout the hour-long workout.

We started in the middle of the floor with some simple standing positions, than moved to the bar for standing planks and squats, and eventually moved onto the floor for extra core and glute workouts.  And a great workout it was.  Each circuit easily allowed for multiple different modifications based on your body’s ability. You know how there are those times in a workout class you don’t modify to prove that you’re in just as great of shape as everyone else? It wasn’t like that here. You felt comfortable enough to achieve the best workout according to what you're able to do.  And Sadie continuously stressed that, making you more relaxed and focused on what you should be strengthening.

For instance, I have a bad ankle, so for some of the toe rises, I stayed flat-footed and focused on how to strengthen my thighs in my modified position. And I can promise you my thighs did not miss out. Another thing I loved about it was that during certain circuits, it didn’t even feel like you were working out. It seemed like you were just holding a pose, maybe even stretching. However, my body today says otherwise.

Barre3 is a great way to get in shape with an encouraging atmosphere that seemingly delivers results quickly. Your body may hate you the week after, but you will love your body in just a few more.

Barre3 opened just this week and is located at 63 W. 8th St. NYC.  Don't live in NYC?  No worries.  They have online workouts that are just as good if you're determined.

The Best Fitness Apps


fitness-appsYou can consider all of us here at BeautySweetSpot fitness fanatics. From running, to yoga and barre, we've got it all covered, which is why we rounded up the best fitness apps that’ll inspire you to get up and get moving – all while having fun, of course.


This easy-to-use fitness app is great for experienced runners and newbies alike. It features a GPS map that’ll track your every move and a very nice lady-robot (probably related to Siri) who will tell you helpful things like your pace and how long you’ve been running. Once you complete your workout session, Runkeeper gives you the option of bragging about your time and distance on social media, which is awesome for motivational purposes. Never forget that it doesn’t matter how far you go or how fast, you’re still lapping everyone who’s on the couch.

Yoga Studio

Yoga memberships are expensive. A single class can cost upwards of twenty bucks.  Enter the Yoga Studio app. For less than five bucks you get a plethora of awesome routines that are designed to strengthen your muscles through guided workouts and audio cues. More experienced and actually able to touch your toes already? There are plenty of more advanced workouts available, making this the ideal app for yogis of all levels.


Sometimes the hardest part of working out is just showing up. Pact makes that decision significantly easier by offering rewards and penalties for people who break their workout dates, meaning that every time you skip a workout…you lose real money deducted from your credit card. On the other hand if you meet your goals at the end of the week, then you can actually earn money too! Clever, right? The best part is that Pact can be synced with other fitness apps like your FitBit or even Runkeeper to help hold you accountable without having to do too much extra work like logging in your exercise manually.

Zombies, Run!

If Runkeeper is too boring for you to consider running as a real form of exercise, why don't you give Zombies, Run! a try? Suddenly, running to the corner ahead of you means the difference between you surviving the Zombie apocalypse and you getting totally eaten by a crowd of the walking dead. The app has super creative story lines built in that make you think you're running for your life and running certain distances will unlock gear that'll help you survive another day. Definitely better then your average workout class, right?

Charity Miles

While you're out running from Zombies or challenging your friends to work out twice a week in order to earn five dollars, consider also logging your challenges with Charity Miles. For every mile of exercise that you do, a corporate sponsor will donate to a charity on your behalf. That way, not only are you helping yourself live a healthier lifestyle, but you will be helping the lives of others at the same time.


Exclusive Interview with Ballerina, Misty Copeland

mistycopeland2.jpg“Thank you for your application to our ballet company. Unfortunately, you will not be accepted.  You lack the right feet, achilles tendons, turn out, torso length, and bust.  You have the wrong body for ballet. And at 13, you are too old to be considered.”

Misty Copeland, the woman in the new Under Armour 'I Will What I Want' ad, told me was a list of reasons why she would never succeed as a ballerina.  Today, well look at her.  I was fortunate enough to sit down one-on-one with the first African-American soloist in two decades for the American Theater Ballet Company.  Here's what she had to say...

mistycopelandWhat is it that drew you to ballet?

I was literally pushed into it. I didn’t know anything about [ballet]. So there was no drive or real focal point really. I took my first ballet class at a boys and girls club on a basketball court and I was pushed into taking it. I took it at the late age of 13 and then to achieve being a member of one of the most prestigious ballet companies in the world in only four years of training I think just says something about the determination that was so innate that just speaks to the I Will What I Want campaign.

What is it that you love most about ballet?

It’s athletic, artistic, I think it’s an art and a sport. I think we need to come up with a new word for that. We’re more than just an athlete and more than just an artist. And what it takes to be the whole package and be all these things and these very elite small percentage of people that makes it to these top companies it takes a ton of perseverance and determination and dedication.

If you weren’t doing ballet, what is it you think you would doing with your life/career?

I would be athletic. I’d be Fashion. I don’t know. I would be doing something that got me moving. I think that’s what I was meant to do. From the time I was like seven, I had like massive calf muscles and thighs even though I did nothing physical. So I think I was meant to do something physical.

Did you ever play other sports?

I played basketball for fun with my brothers when I was growing up. There was three boys in my family. But I never played in leagues or anything that was structured. I’m really drawn to basketball. I can’t wait to meet Steph Curry who’s now also Under Armour athlete, who plays for the Golden State Warriors. Hopefully I get a one-on-one with him.

What’s your guiltiest pleasure?

Oooh shoes. When it comes to food though? Cupcakes.

What’s your favorite pair of shoes?

Right now I have a pair of Saint Laurent's that are like hot pink platform. But that’s not my typical. Like I have so many Christian Louboutins. The very classic ones simple nude, black, pointy toe.

Misty Copeland was phenomenal in person and such an inspiration.  Check out her video and I promise you'll be inspired, too.


SLT, The Best 50 Minutes of Exercise, Ever

SLT "This is hard as sh*t," my best friend Adrienne grunted to me as we attempted to pull our knees to our chest in the most twisted plank position while on a reformer. Moving it in and out with our hands up on handle bars, the resistance wasn't all that I loved to hate. Her seventh class, my first.  She did it.  But I on the other hand, realized that while I may appear toned, I'm beyond weak.  Having never been on a reformer machine before, leave it to my BFF to encourage me not only to try it, but to test it out during an SLT class.

SLT = strengthen, lengthen, tone (until you die) is a megaformer workout studio.  Being that I take barre classes about five times a week, the workout seemed right up my alley and I was excited to challenge myself again with something different. Our instructor, Kaitlin, showed me the ropes of the reformer and through cardio, a bit of weight training and body sculpting through Pilates, every single muscle of my body was worked.  I was sweating.  Actually sweating and you know I only like to 'glisten.'

SLT-2There were only six people in our class, but the studio can hold ten.  It's small, but spacious with mirror lined walls and windows looking over the city streets.  The class lasts 50 minutes and costs $40 if you pay individually.  However, they of course have packages that are more cost effective.  Despite the fact that I wasn't able to do everything, there were women in there who could, including my BFF. This is a fitness class that I now need in my lifestyle.

To view a schedule, visit

SLT Midtown is located at 41 W. 57th St., NYC and SLT Soho is at 132 Crosby St., NYC

Man Parts: Ode to the Abdominal V

Zac Efron

Something's going on in the men's fashion industry, where calling attention to exposed not-so-hot body parts is gaining traction. My first glimpse of random man flesh was in a NY Mag feature on mankles, encouraging guys to 'throw out their socks.'  Then came a Huffington Post article featuring Jude Law and his he-vage, man breasts shown off by wearing a super deep V T-shirt.  Whatever happened to "the V" (you know, that sexy abdominal V) and why in God's name isn't anyone designing to show that off?


While I can stand behind cuffed jeans paired with boat shoes, it is utterly ridiculous to refer to a man's ankle or (anyone's ankle for that matter) as sexy.  I did for a second, reconsider when I read on to find the writer describing the 'mankle' in an erotic way, "A part that is both strong yet delicate, like the body’s D’Angelo ballad." The body's D'Angelo ballad (Brown Sugar anyone?).  Yes, convincing indeed.  Then I realized it was the words I was turned on by, not the 'mankle,' which I'm still not sure is a good or bad thing.  Either way, she made a strong case.

Photo Credit: Huffington Post

The thought of 'he-vage' on the other hand makes me heave.  And if you thought Jude Law could do no wrong, you're wrong.  I will say, his bod is rocking, but come on.  By inspecting his T-shirt it doesn't look stretched out, which means he bought it like that. Who even makes T-shirts for men like that?  I've seen tanks at American Apparel that resemble the same deep V style, but they remind me of something Hulk Hogan would wear wrestling, which is why I'm also deeming this look as not hot. The best part of this article is when John Jannuzzi, Senior Digital Editor of GQ comments, "If it crosses the nipple line, as it has here, you’ve gone too far.”

Now let's get to it.  If 'mankles' don't turn you on and 'he-vage' doesn't get your juices flowing, then you'll most likely agree with me that the abdominal V is clearly the sexiest part of a man's body.  It's innocent enough to be exposed in public, yet sexy enough to let your imagination run wild.  Now, I'll leave you with that D'Angelo ballad.

5 things worth checking out this week

Sick of throwing away beauty products? Here are a few great tricks to making them last just a little bit longer! [Beauty High] With bikini season just around the corner, here are some awesome fitness fashions to help kick your butt into gear [College Candy]

Banish blemishes and dark spots fast with an all natural kitchen remedy [Bella Sugar]

How women really put on their makeup in the morning (disclaimer: do not watch at work, you will be fired for laughing too loud) [Elite Daily]

If you're not a fan of a traditional sweat sesh, check out the latest fitness craze: The Vixen Workout [The Luxury Spot]

Sponsored: Gym Bag Essential

How many times a day do you switch bags?  In one day, I typically switch between a gym bag (my new Juicy Couture one that I'm obsessed with pictured above), computer bag (which acts as my office on the go) and cross body bag that's big enough to fit just the essentials.  While I always transfer my wallet, keys and lipgloss, each of them have staples that remain within.  I'm sure you can relate to this madness as a girl has to do what a girl has to do.  One of my gym bag staples are so essential I have to tell you about them.

Daily, I arrive to barre class looking like I'm about to go skiing, peel off my layers and while I don't leave dripping in sweat, I'm sticky and glistening.  Yes, a shower is in order.  However, before I get there, I pile on all of the layers again and typically have a million errands to run before I actually get home.  Therefore, before putting my snowsuit back on, I dig in my bag and freshen up quickly with Ban Total Refresh Cooling Body Cloths.

They give off a cooling effect on contact and are a sneaky way to pretend you showered.  I always feel awake and revived after working out and these are like the icing on the cake. They're available in three scents called Enliven, Restore and Invigorate, which I like the best because it smells the freshest for $3.29 at mass retailers. 

*This is a sponsored post, but my thoughts and actions are true.

Shaking is Key to A Successful Barre Class

My legs were shaking like I was having an orgasm (sorry mom).  That's when I knew I had to write about it.  It's been a month that this has been happening.  Class after class, move after move and it's not stopping thanks to Local Barre.  Turns out, shaking is a good thing!  Taking any type of barre class?  Read this before your next pulse or squeeze.  It'll make you want to shake, too.

"Shaking means your changing your body and doing it right," explains one of my Local Barre instructors, Meghan Grant.  "You're working your body to exhaustion and changing your muscles by making them nice and lean."

As a fitness enthusiast, you know I've been frequently attending CKO classes and have always tried new classes at my former gym, which have all kept me in shape, but nothing ever made me actually shake.  Since ballet inspired barre classes are focused on the core and help to strengthen, lengthen and tone even the tiniest muscles, shaking at times during class is necessary for change.

In order to shake, you need to figure out the technique and check your alignment on every move.  Once that's in check, continue to challenge yourself.  "Always adjust when your body gets comfortable and don't be afraid to ask your instructor questions," Grant remarked.  To achieve the detailed toning you're looking for, kick things up a notch to continue to shake – get higher on the balls of your feet when doing exercises in relevé and try bending down into a lower chair when it's time to work those thighs.  

Local Barre is located in Hoboken, NJ.

How to Accomplish Your New Year's Resolution

According to Forbes, 40% of Americans make New Year's Resolutions, but only 8% of us keep them and actually achieve our goals.  Well let's see... maybe because with a fresh start most of us are optimistic dreamers and as the year goes on, life gets in the way and we become realists.  Here's a simple tip on how to keep and accomplish your New Year's Resolution.  Get pumped! The key to succeeding is to be realistic, specific and simple.  Honestly, saying you're going to lose weight or eat healthier this year will last a maximum of two months, OK maybe three and fluctuate all year, but will you really accomplish an end goal?  And what exactly is the end goal? Did you lose five pounds when you could have shed a healthy 15 or occasionally throughout the year not order the side of fries?

Instead of being so general give yourself a specific, realistic goal like "I'm going to work out three times a week."  Another great example is the campaign that Special K is doing to Fight Fat Talk.  #FightFatTalk - Simply, don't bash your thighs.  I wrote about it here.  Most women (guilty myself) always have something to complain about when it comes to their bodies.  Make it a resolution to stop and instead of complaining, change it.  Simple, realistic and specific.  Good luck!