So this is what happens on your birthday when you are training for a B Inspired B Adventurous trip at Balance. You show up for the training and jump on the skill mill to warm up (more on the skill mill later) and when it is time for your group to appear for training you are diverted to the door to embark on a mystery run throughout Chestnut Hill with friends appearing on every block with balloons spelling INSPIRE.
“Inspire” is a word to describe how I feel when I train with the B Adventurous groups at Balance. My first trip to Utah was an adventure of a lifetime. Training in the Wissahickon trails at all hours of the morning and night to prepare for a 24-hour relay run in Zion National Park was exhilarating to say the least, but the camaraderie and friendships born out of the training experience were even more rewarding.
The smaller group training, Spartans race and trip to Palm Beach were nothing short of fabulous. Our training consisted of running trails, climbing ropes, moving heavy objects from one place to another, lifting weights and practicing on the monkey bars. The trip was like going on the most hilarious sober bachelorette party imaginable. We rode bikes with baskets, visited Amy in the ER after an allergic reaction to buckwheat (yes, buckwheat), ran alongside the ocean, meditated by the pool at the colony, spent hours talking over breakfast, lunch and dinner and laughed and laughed and laughed for four days.
I’m training for my third trip and this one will be a biking challenge from Switzerland into Germany and then back to Switzerland. We are a group of 15 with an age range of 25-71 (my mother is the 71 year old and she is every bit as fierce as the rest of the group!). Our training is intense and incredibly fulfilling. Let’s just say that Amy’s additional skill mill training from her winter weekend at Technogym in NYC is being put to use! We are building our strength and endurance in the gym, cycling outdoors and integrating meditation at last once a week. The group dynamics are amazing and I’m spending time with women I would not ordinarily see on a daily basis and I love every minute of it!
Training for a B Adventurous trip has been like a birthday celebration every week. There is always a surprise and you are surrounded by team and friends every step of the way.
There is purpose in everything we do – how we choose to raise our family and live our lives. There is great purpose in how we choose friends, where and how we work and what we do with our free time. So the idea of a “for–purpose” business model was fascinating to me. We have seen the for-purpose model in apparel like Tom’s shoes (the famous, buy a pair and give one away). Even our local favorite, Simplygoodjars, has a for-purpose model (buy a salad and for every returned jar a meal will go to the homeless in Philadelphia). When Amy and I dreamt up B Inspired, it was the for-purpose model we fell in love with and knew would be the model we create for our community.
Everything we do at B Inspired is about team and community. We train together, travel and embark on goals programs together. We visit the Barnes and the Ballet and listen to inspirational speakers and authors. We enrich our lives as a community of women and in turn we give the proceeds of B Inspired to the larger community of Philadelphia in which we live. We give back to local museums, the PA Ballet and educational non-profits for the underserved children in Philadelphia. We also give back to important organizations like LLS (Leukemia and Lymphoma Society) and LBBC (Living Beyond Breast Cancer).
This year, the first weekend in May is important for us at B Inspired and Balance. We have our wellness festival at Balance from 10-2 on Saturday, May 5, and proceeds will benefit LLBC. The following day a team of B Inspired and Balance women will run together in the Broad Street run with Team in Training for LLS. These two organizations are firmly rooted in wellness and health and we feel so passionate about their missions.
The for-purpose model helps us create meaningful experiences for our community of women and all of the Balance members, but to also contribute to other like-minded organizations. Come out to the wellness festival on Saturday and take part in this amazing day that will give back to such an inspiring and important organization like LBBC! It feels so good to be with the B Inspired and Balance team exercising, meditating and hearing from experts – and it feels even better to be giving back to an incredible organization that provides services and care for Breast Cancer patients, survivors and their families.
Sara and Ryan Hall with their 4 daughters at the LA Festival. We have been fortunate to have both Sara and Ryan, premiere distance runners, participate in our festivals. They Philly festival gave back to their foundation, The Hall Steps Foundation
Balance… our favorite topic, especially when our girl, Sara is giving advice! We love that Sara, one of America’s premiere distance runners is talking about the importance of balance, overtraining, and recovery. A huge reason our personal trainers are equipped to help set fitness goals and create a roadmap to make your training successful and safe. The pros will help you focus on smaller goals that are specific and realistic; they’re more attainable, setting you up to achieve the larger, more audacious goal. We are extremely excited to watch Sara’s road to Boston… what a goal!
We are beyond excited for the Hall family to join us in LA for the Marlborough Wellness Festival.
About this power couple…Both were California high school superstars and All-Americans at Stanford University (where they met). Ryan has posted the best-ever American times in the Half Marathon and Marathon and has represented the US in the 2008 and 2012 Olympic Games. Sara was the 2012 US National Cross Country Champion and a Gold Medalist at the Panamerican Games in the steeplechase. She has represented the US at three World Indoor Track and Field Championships and a World Cross Country Championship.
Balance Trainer & Instructor, Carmen DelMastro, is featured this week to share with you how he “balances” his fitness routine into his busy life.
Carmen’s career in the fitness industry began in 2012 and since that time he has held numerous positions – from a floor & small group trainer, to the personal training manager & director at a large health club. He has also worked as an exercise physiologist at one of the top rehabilitation facilities in the Philadelphia area.
Growing up, sports were Carmen’s passion, and he dedicated his life to developing himself as an athlete. Unfortunately, there was one major obstacle that constantly stood in his way… injuries. Time after time, he would find myself nursing ailments, completely ignorant to what was causing the pain in the first place. This was the driving force inspiring his career change to personal training.
Carmen dedicated himself to functional training, where he has found himself in the best shape of his life – stronger & more flexible than ever – while focusing on injury rehabilitation and future injury prevention. His goal is to help his clients achieve the same healthy physical balance of strength and flexibility and understand the body’s movement to best avoid injury and maximize performance and results.
Training for me has always kind of been programmed into my brain since I was a young kid trying to make as a professional baseball player. I have always been on a strict schedule and regardless of how busy or how stressed for time I am I always make it a priority to train myself during the day. It doesn’t have to be a long training session it just has to be as effective as possible whether it’s 20 minutes or 45 minutes.
I primarily like to focus on flexibility and mobility work to begin all of my workouts since I’ve suffered a various amounts of injuries during my time playing sports growing up this area of my workouts is vital for me. I than do a dynamic warmup which generally consists of sport specific movements whether it is to get my heart rate up or my fast twitch muscles firing.
I usually get into some type of compound exercise whether it’s deadlifts, bench press, front squats or hang cleans depending on the day. Throw in some accessory work to go along with the particular muscle group I did as my compound and that’s generally my workout for the day. I am also a plyometric fanatic so I do like to jump around from time to time. I generally am training anywhere between 5-6 times a week depending on how I am feeling for that particular week.
A favorite blog/ podcast personality, Tim Ferris interviews Ryan Flaherty, Senior Director at Nike Performance on improving athlete’s performance.
“Don’t buy complexity; the simpler you make your training, the better the results become.”
– Ryan Flaherty
“Ryan Flaherty (@ryanflaherty1) is the Senior Director of Performance at Nike. Prior to holding that position, Ryan was the Founder and President of Prolific Athletes LLC, a sports performance facility in San Diego, California, where he trained some of the world’s best athletes. His clients include Serena Williams, Russell Wilson, the Arizona Cardinals, Marcus Mariota, Jameis Winston, and hundreds of other professional athletes.
While he is well known for dramatically improving his athletes’ speed, more and more athletes (and coaches) seek Ryan out for his training and guidance on injury prevention. Many of Ryan’s clients have made remarkable recoveries from injuries, and several NFL teams and European soccer clubs have sought his methodology to implement into their training programming.
Ryan developed an algorithm called “Force Number” that is based on the hex (or trap) bar deadlift and body weight to predict speed such as the forty-yard dash.
In this discussion, we talk about exercises for reducing injury potential, how Ryan uses the Force Number, what his workouts look like from warmup to finish, how he helped Meb Keflezighi train for his Boston Marathon victory, how to go from sprinting to long distance running, and lots more.
Whether you’re trying to become a better athlete or just less injured from your workouts in any type of training, you’ll want to check out this conversation with Ryan Flaherty, the Savant of Speed!”
Julie shares a little about her first “real” meditation experience and how it led her down a path of teaching meditation.
Listen here to her podcast:
Julie Hunt is a Chopra Center Certified Meditation Instructor passionately devoted to helping people live healthier and happier stress free lives, using the tools of meditation, yoga and Ayurveda. She has inspired thousands of people as a teacher, coach, entrepreneur and author of Shout from the Rooftops in Your Stilettos.
She teaches regularly at the Chopra Center’s Perfect Health program and hosts
workshops and retreats in Philadelphia and San Diego. She has served on The
Chopra Center’s leadership team as Senior Manager of Digital Products where she
helped to bring online programs to life featuring Deepak Chopra, Eckhart Tolle, Martha Beck, Dr. Andrew Weil, and others. She enthusiastically shares great knowledge and simple techniques to help people tap into infinite possibilities and remember their true nature, which is perfection.
We live in a time of “festivals” and special gatherings for almost anything imaginable. We grew up going to music or film festivals, but now there are festivals for any interest or passion. There are festivals for seafood, skateboarding, cultural celebrations, beer, and seasons, to name a few. There are even vegan festivals. I know this to be true because my friend Sheila and her husband attended such a festival in LA this weekend.
Since Amy and I have had precarious reactions to our most recent vegan meals–mine had me in head to toe hives and Amy’s landed her in the ER on our Spartans Adventure in Palm Beach–the very thought of a vegan festival had me scratching my imaginary hives. But it also had me wondering what one does at a vegan festival? For Sheila and her husband–both eager vegan festival participants–the specific agenda wasn’t particularly important, it was about being with like-minded people around a culinary and lifestyle choice they embraced and that made them feel good. This actually made a great deal of sense to me as I have come to love Wellness Festivals for these very reasons!
Wellness Festivals are for anyone and everyone who care about living a full and abundant life and being their best selves. Every wellness festival is different. If you attend Goop in NYC or LA you can expect to hear from interesting new age speakers, drink bone broth, get a vitamin injection and possibly a beauty treatment. At GoodFest you can expect to spend the day with 200 millenials in a chic and upcoming area of the city, like Fishtown, and listen to influencers about wellness trends.
Amy and I have made a habit of attending various wellness festivals and taking copious notes about what we like and don’t like and how we would do it differently. Last November was our first B Inspired Wellness Festival at Balance, and on May 5 we will host our third wellness festival–second in Philadelphia–at Balance from 10-2:30.
Here is what wellness festivals mean to us. Wellness Festivals are about exercising, meditating, learning something new and inspiring, trying healthy foods, shopping in a marketplace featuring local favorites and being with an amazing community of like-minded people of all ages. We have experts in mindfulness, meditation, endurance sports, yoga, nutrition and cooking–all coming to share their thoughts, gifts and inspiration. Join us….it is more than a wellness festival. It’s a feel-good, exercise-meditation-inspiration fusion community event and it is so much fun!