Friday Favorites: 9/1/17

The Friday before Labor Day is either barely a Friday or the ULTIMATE Friday. There’s this liberating sense of “nothing’s getting done today, so let’s just accept it.” Unfortunately, I have a full to-do list, but I’m going to do my best to stay focused so my tasks don’t spill over into the weekend. I may not be able to blow off the work day for early happy hour today, but I’m determined to have a real holiday weekend.

In the meantime, here are a few things that made my favorites list this week.

“Listen Up” by Nicole Atkins

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I’ve followed Nicole Atkins for years. When she lived in the North East (and I was younger) I went to her shows all the time. It’s been a while since I’ve seen her live (she moved to Nashville and I don’t see live music nearly as much as I should), but I just scored tickets to her upcoming show at the Mercury Lounge and I am so pumped! I can’t wait to hear her play the tracks from her new album, especially Listen Up, which is this week’s anthem.

Kettlebell Windmills

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img src: mensjournal.com

Can one’s core ever be strong enough? We’ll probably never know. And, honestly, planks, v-ups, and sit-ups get boring. Enter the kettlebell windmill! A few weeks ago I wrote about this movement for Men’s Journal. It’s one that I sometimes forget about, but it is so challenging and effective. You can use a kettlebell or a dumbbell, and the weight doesn’t have to be very heavy for you to feel it.

Deep Blue

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This week, while still in bed, I yawned and stretched my arm overhead and pulled a shoulder muscle. Yup. Didn’t do it during a barbell complex or a metcon at CrossFit. I did it yawning. So stupid, and it is still nagging me three days later. I’ve been stretching, rolling, and regularly applying this Deep Blue Rub from doTerra. It helps loosen things up and temporarily relieves the pain. Luckily, it smells waaaay better than Ben-Gay or Icy Hot, because it’s basically become my signature scent.

Sugar-Free Jello

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I mentioned last week that I’m counting macros and making an extra effort to eat clean. I wish I could be one of those people who cuts sugar and is like “I don’t even crave it any more!” The truth is that I’m not. And I do. I’ve allowed some indulgences here and there, but Sugar-Free Jello has become almost a daily treat. There’s barely anything in it (that’s why they give it to hospital patients) but its just sweet enough to feel like dessert. Add a small spoonful of Cool Whip and it’s (almost?) like eating a bowl of ice cream. Okay, not quite, but I’ll take what I can get. This strawberry-banana is one of my favorite flavors!

Younger on TVLand

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Are you watching this show? It’s become my favorite smart, yet lighthearted piece of appointment television. The writing is great – funny, touching, edgy, sassy, and the fashion and set design is fantastic. And speaking of eye candy, there’s Josh:

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Note the welling of the tears.

And CHARLES:

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We are all Sutton Foster.

The season finale is approaching, and I just don’t know what I’m going to do with myself on Wednesday nights.

What are you loving this week?

 

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All Hail the Kettlebell

Is it weird to love – like REALLY love – a piece of fitness equipment? Especially one that has caused you so much pain?

Probably, but I’m owning it. I love kettlebells. They’re an incredibly versatile tool, and they’re so darn effective. So when I had the opportunity to pitch the “Belly Shrink” section of Shape, I went straight to the bells. Yes, they’re known for revving your heart rate and strengthening your posterior chain, but they’re also great for the core.

And just when I think there’s no improving the good, old-fashioned kettlebell, they go ahead and make ’em gold and sparkly!

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To read the full article, check out the April 2017 issue of Shape!