Mast Brothers Brooklyn Chocolate Tour

There are few things more fun then spending an evening learning and tasting chocolate with friends after a long day at work.

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Almost a year ago, I discovered the brand while perusing the chocolate section at our local grocery store and since then have visited their Williamsburg location two times. Previously our small chocolate stash was primarily Swiss chocolate, heavily influenced from our time living there, but over the past few months more and more Mast Brothers chocolate has found its way into our house.  Therefore, when Gilt City invited Heather, Diana, Alanna, Christine and I for private tour at Mast Brothers Chocolate factory and show room in Brooklyn, I was elated!

Mast brothers bloggers

mast brothers behind the scenes

This behind-the-scenes tour which took place at their original, Williamsburg location provided us with a better understanding of not only how they make their chocolate but also how it is different than other chocolate brands.  During the tour we learned a great deal ranging from the details behind the process to the history of the brand.

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  • The company was started by two brothers, Rick and Michael, one a chef and the other a business man.
  • They sold their first bars (17 to be exact) on their first day at Brooklyn based Artists & Flea
  • They now have three locations: Williamsburg, LA and London.
  • They pride themselves on including no more than 6 ingredients in any bar.
  • Cacoa nibs are made of half cocoa solids and half cocoa butter.
  • The nib portion boast many health benefits due to the fact that each serving contains flavanoids, antioxidants, 9 grams of fiber, magnesium, and potassium!
  • They have a base line of popular chocolate flavors but also introduce seasonal collections each year.
  • They do their best to source the ingredients for the chocolate from local or small farms and business partners such as Stumptown Coffee for the coffee that goes in their coffee bar.
  • Their recent collection is an herb collection, of which lavender is their most popular!
  • My personal favorite flavors are sea salt, goat milk, and lavendar in the perfectly portioned small 1.0 oz size bars.

If you want to enjoy your own tour of the factory, check out the great deal Gilt City is offering through tomorrow which includes a $20 credit to spend on chocolate! It saves you more than 50% and would make a great date night or weekend activity with friends or out-of-town guests!

Interested to try Gilt City? One lucky reader will win a $50 Gilt gift card! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Gilt City covered the cost of this tour but we were not compensated and all opinions, as always, are my own. 

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I Miss My Running Endurance and A Giveaway

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Happy Monday!

If you follow me on Snapchat (@healthyhappier) you already know that this morning Bo and I laced up our shoes for our first morning run together in ages. It’s easy to forget how simple running is in comparison to other workouts. Just ten minutes after the alarm went off we were running through the neighborhood. Since we were only running for 30 minutes, we just had to change clothes, lace up our shoes, chug some water and push start on the stop watch.  The simplicity of this, in comparison to our morning workouts in the city, left us smiling and relaxed. We immediately decided that starting out the week with a morning run is the best way to kick off a healthy week and transition from the weekend to a busy work week. The F train has driven us crazy the past few weeks, running a reduced schedule during peak times, which has changed the morning commute for workouts from 20 minutes to almost 45 most mornings.

Don’t get me wrong, we aren’t breaking up with cross training or ClassPass anytime soon. But, due to a few upcoming races and healthy bodies, we are going to spend more time hitting the pavement. This morning’s run made us both realize just how much training we have ahead of us in order to be race ready.  The run wasn’t easy but we still loved the time together and the fact that we faced the harsh reality that we’ve both lost our endurance and Summer training will be tough.

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Our route this morning was a flat and shady 3.5 mile route which took us through Cobble Hill, Boerum Hill and Carroll Gardens before ending in Gowanus.  Our average pace was around 9:45, which felt more like sub 8-minute miles.  Even though I ran two half marathons and a ten miler this Spring, it has been a while since I consistently trained for a race. Now that we’re both healthy – I’m excited to focus on running.  Our goal is to run three times per week – speed, long and tempo. This week is a base-building week which will include two four mile runs an done 6 mile run.  Due to weekends in Vermont and down in Avalon, New Jersey there aren’t many races during the Summer that work with our schedule but here is our tentative race schedule. We are using a few of the NYRR Open Run 5k as speed work and diagnostic runs. In addition to these, we will be doing long runs each weekend to build our endurance.

In addition to running, we will each continue using ClassPass (<–link to save you $) for cross training, taking 10 classes per month using the new NYC Core Plan.

To celebrate my return to running, I have teamed up with Timex to give one lucky reader a Timex Ironman Colors watch of their choice!  I’ve been using the Timex Sleek 150 and Sleek 50 models this Spring and love the fun colors, large buttons and easy to use features.

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To enter, leave a comment with your favorite running song or which color Timex Watch you’d choose.  I will pick one winner (US only) at 11:59 Tuesday, June 7th. GIVEAWAY CLOSED – WINNER CHOSEN 

 

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Ride the Runway with Cyc & SIX:02 + A SIX:02 Giveaway

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Most seasons, New York Fashion Week comes and goes without me realizing it beyond the increase in traffic, fashionable people and difficulty booking restaurant reservations. But, luckily for health and wellness bloggers, over the past few seasons as more and more ready to wear brands are expanding their lines to include athleisure, this week of fashion highlights is becoming more relevant. As this crossover occurs, athletic brands are also taking advantage of the week and highlighting their brands through either smaller, pop-up events or runway shows to capture the attention of influencers and media who are in New York City for the week of madness.

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Last week, I had the pleasure of attending my first New York Fashion week fitness event, Ride the Runway. This evening event brought health and wellness influencers center stage, by means of a Cyc Fitness  spin bike, for a fashion show highlighting the hottest Spring looks from SIX:02. How about that for a fun, innovative twist on a NYFW event?

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While Keoni, the founder and mastermind behind Cyc Fitness led us through a sweaty and energetic 45-minutes spin class, models debuted the hottest Spring fashion. The spin class was very unique as the Cyc method includes five positions, versus the typical three positions and leverages weighted sandbag/beanbag like weights for multiple songs. It is definitely a challenging workout! During the arm portions, the music changed and the spotlight focused on the runway area. For the next two songs models ran out, showing SIX:02’s hottest Spring gear. Instead of doing a traditional runway walk, they each gave a nod to fitness by doing push-ups, burpees and sprints in the gear. For those that aren’t yet familiar, SIX:02 is a fitness fashion destination that carries the most stylish and on-trend activewear and footwear from top brands like Nike, adidas, Under Armour, ASICS, Koral, ALALA and more. They have 30 stores across the U.S. and are launching a NYC flagship this Spring!

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The Spring gear they highlighted was from a range of brands including Nike, Adidas and Alala and exactly what you’d expect from a fashion show- vibrant, stylish and a bit edgy. I counted at least five items that I’d love to add to my SIX:02 shopping cart, especially the Nike shoes and neon leggings. Can a girl ever have enough leggings? Wait, don’t answer that question.

SIX:02 didn’t want the fun to stop with the Ride the Runway event though, they want readers to have the opportunity to shop the new Spring fashions on their site. Therefore, one lucky winner will win a $50 gift card for SIX:02!

HOW TO ENTER: – THE GIVEAWAY IS CLOSED AT THIS TIME. 

There are two easy ways to get entered:

  1. Follow me on Instagram and leave me a comment letting me know your handle.
  2. Visit SIX:02 and leave a comment below, letting me know what piece of Spring gear you want to buy with your gift card. 

Giveaway will end Tuesday at 11:59pm. 

This is not a sponsored post and all thoughts and feedback are my own. Thank you to SIX:02 for providing the gift card and to both SIX:02 and Cyc Fitness for hosting a wonderful event.  Thank you to Mike Green for the incredible images.

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