OrangeTheory Brooklyn

As you guys know, I always enjoy a good, sweaty workout especially one that challenges me and can help me improve. However, since getting pregnant, I have been hesitant to push myself in boot camp or HIIT (high-intensity interval training) classes. Even though I’m working out with a heart rate monitor, since this is my first pregnancy, I am being very cautious.

Luckily, when OrangeTheory reached out to me, asking if I would like to try their Brooklyn Heights or new Park Slope location, I was thrilled to hear that they have coaches at both locations who specialize in working with prenatal and postnatal moms by providing adjustments, closely monitoring their heart rates and meeting with them before class. In addition, their heart rate based training makes it easy to stay in touch with my body throughout the workout.


Suddenly I realized that it may be possible for me to have a healthy, cautious pregnancy and still get that great endorphin rush.  I was smiling like a kid on Christmas when I trudged through the snowy Brooklyn streets towards the Brooklyn Heights OrangeTheory.  The coach for the class, Garner, welcomed me with a huge smile and quickly reviewed the workout with me as well as giving me a tour of the studio.




Since I’m still accustomed to the cramped, smaller Manhattan studios this location felt like a mansion. The location is spotless, features a huge entrance area where students can relax before and after class, showers, bathrooms and a locker area. As you can see, the studio is also spacious, featuring more than fifteen treadmills and rowing machines as well as a dedicated, spacious strength training area.


Since OrangeTheory is a heart rate-based interval training class, each student wears a chest or wrist heart rate monitor that tracks your stats throughout the workout so you can see your heart rate on the screens during class.  While you can’t use your own heart rate monitor, students can use one for free during their first class and then rent or buy them for future classes.  The goal, for most students, is to stay in the orange or uncomfortable zone for at least a portion of the class. Since I am pregnant, we discussed my previous and current fitness, deciding that my goal should be to spend most of the class in the green zone with a few minutes in the orange zone.


While each OrangeTheory class is different, most classes include a cardio portion, which is split between rowing and running, in addition to a strength portion.  This specific class session started with 25 minutes of cardio, rotating between the rowing machine and treadmill for intervals followed by a balanced strength portion targeting arms, abs, and legs.

By the end of the class, I was a sweaty mess but still smiling. With Coach Garner’s help, I made sure not to push myself too hard but still left class sweating and woke up the next morning feeling my hamstrings from the hills and feeling muscles I hadn’t pushed in the past few weeks.  In fact, I loved my first class so much that I was back just a few days later and am now seriously considering a package.


If you’re interested in trying OrangeTheory, your first class is free. If you live in Brooklyn, the Park Slope location is offering discounted packages and specials to celebrate their opening.


This post is sponsored by OrangeTheory Brooklyn but as you may have seen on Instastories and Snapchat, I’ve already been back again! I love OrangeTheory and all opinions in this post are my own. 


Baby Diamond – Week 15

Good evening! I hope you all are having a great week. I’ve been focused on work this week as I made the transition out of relaxed, vacation mode. Starting with this update, I am going to share weekly baby updates capturing my experience. In addition to the weekly updates I will also do a few posts throughout my pregnancy sharing favorite items, reader recommendations and reflections on running and working out through pregnancy.

Week 15 pregnancy

Baby Size: Peach

Weight Gained: We don’t currently have a scale at home but I have probably gained around 12 pounds. At my last doctor’s appointment, my doctor cautioned me to watch my weight gain carefully. To be honest, I was surprised and caught off guard because unlike many women, I have craved lots of healthy foods during pregnancy and felt as if I was taking good care of myself. While I understand her concern, I have also read and heard from others that early weight gain is common in active women due to the reduction in exercise during the first trimester. In fact, now that I am working out again and feeling good, I feel as if I lost a few pounds over the holidays.

Workouts: I was craving workouts this entire week. In fact, I went for two long walks with my mom while we were home and then once we returned to New York I enjoyed Soul Cycle, prenatal pilates, Bar Method, yoga and two runs.


Cravings: I continue to crave La Croix sparkling water, fruit and Italian food. I requested pizza one night when we were home in Savannah and then once we returned to Brooklyn we made homemade spinach and mushroom lasagna.

Food Aversions: Brussels Sprouts or any other vegetable with a strong smell when cooked, like broccoli, don’t appeal to me.

Symptoms: Unlike many women, my hair did not become thick and beautiful during pregnancy. In fact, it became weaker than normal. After getting split ends and fighting with my dull, lackluster hair I had two inches cut off and switched my shampoo and conditioner to a gentler formula. If we’re being honest, my other symptoms are gas and constipation. The only thing that works for my constipation is eating a few prunes followed by hot lemon water. Luckily, the gas is worst in the evening so I’m not embarrassing myself in public though I do feel badly for Bo.

Sleep: During our vacation, Bo and I both went to bed by 10pm each night which allowed me to enjoy at least nine hours of sleep each day. I slept pretty well, though I woke up every single night around 4 AM to use the bathroom and I was up with bad dreams two nights.

Wearing: So far my daily wardrobe is a JCrew tissue turtleneck, AG maternity jeans and a wrap sweater or vest. I bought five turtlenecks on Black Friday in a size larger than normal as I knew they would be a perfect Winter pregnancy staple. Even though I’ve never worn AG before, my friend Elizabeth gave me a pair of hand-me-down AG corduroys and the fit was so perfect that I ordered jeans in the same style during A Pea In the Pod’s holiday sale.

Other random things from the week: Baby brain seems to be in full effect as I did a few very absent minded things last week such as searching the pantry for an item while holding it in my hand, purchasing three packs of corn starch at the grocery store and forgetting where I put something.

Your turn: Any questions? Anything that you loved during your second trimester or any tips? 


2017 Word of The Year

Well friends, 2017 is off to a pretty strong start thus far. Bo and I enjoyed a thoroughly relaxing staycation in Brooklyn which included two seasons of House of Cards, reading, writing thank you notes, a few great workouts, lots of cooking and even more sleep.  I’m starting off this short, four day work week feeling refreshed and ready to conquer both my work and personal to-do lists.

As I spent time reflecting on 2016 and looking forward to 2017, I tried to think about what I want out of this year. This year is going to be one of great change, as we plan to welcome Baby Girl Diamond into our home in mid-June.  I know that the next few months will quickly become a whirlwind between work, travel, preparing our home for her arrival and finally becoming a family of three.

Keeping these things in mind, as well as everything I learned last year, my word or focus for the year is CONNECTED.


Clearly this is not everyone who I want to build a deeper connection with in 2017. In fact, I realized that I took WAY too few pictures this year and can barely find pictures of some of my dearest friends and family.

Family & Friends – I want to focus on growing closer and more connected to the people who bring me joy and letting go of others.  Over the years, during multiple moves and life changes, I have worked tirelessly to keep every friendship strong when in reality, part of life is people flowing in and out of your life. Instead of forcing relationships which may naturally ebb and flow, I am focusing on staying connected and deepening my relationship with the people who made me happiest during 2016. I started doing this already this year by scheduling more intimate dates with friends versus only seeing them in larger group settings. In regards to family, these relationships can be complicated. Luckily, during 2016, I was able to build my relationship with my immediate family (mother, brother and father) last year and look forward to continuing to stay connected with them in an even more meaningful way this year. Since we live such different lives and so far apart, it was sometimes intimidating to stay connected but I’ve found – similar to some of my closest long distance friends, daily text messages and weekly phone calls go a long way.

Body – During my first trimester, I took things very easy, focusing on prenatal classes. While this was the right thing to do at that time, especially considering the fears I had during the first trimester of losing the baby, now that I am in week 16, I am trying to be better connected to my body’s needs. Over the past three days, I have felt more alive and energized than I have in weeks and I believe part of this is due to listening to what my body wants. My body has been craving sweat and cardio workouts versus the gentle workouts of the first trimester. This goal of being connected goes beyond workouts to food and rest. Some days, that may mean a homemade lasagna followed by hot chocolate and other days that may be a long walk/jog and acai bowl. Pregnancy has forced me to listen and I want to continue doing this throughout the next five months as well as post baby.