Tuesday, September 29, 2020

What to Expect During Masked Exercise

Tips from Coach Amber!

Hi! Amber, Girl Fight Fitness running coach here, to talk about masks. This is new for me to write a piece about my personal experiences. So please bear with me! Also, for those of you that may not know me, I’m not usually seen within the four walls of either location. I’m used to helping those of you who choose to set goals on crossing a 5k finish line and help you do so outside in parks and on running trails.

This year, I’m sorry to say, has looked very different. From the unexpected shutdowns and continuously canceled races, it has made personal running popular but group settings almost non-existent. As a result, this gave me the time to experience other Girl Fight classes and what they are like with the newly implemented state protocols.

Let’s face it, masks can be a pain in any area of life, especially when you forget it and have to go back home or to the car and grab it. However, I kind of experimented the other day with different kinds of masks during class. I had three different masks and will explain each of them.

  1. Cloth Mask - I started the class with the cloth mask and found it to be just okay at first through the warm up and the first couple of rounds of kickboxing/floor work. It was a bit heavy feeling, but it was nice to take it down (in my socially distanced square) for a sip of water.
  2. Disposable Mask - I noticed this one to be a bit more breathable and more comfortable. When it got damp with sweat, it was more comfortable than the cloth one. It was a little bit more lightweight and got me through the workout. Again, those sips of water in between, where I got a slight break from the mask, was much appreciated.

Say it with me… ew, mask sweat! I am not saying I’m going to solve the wearing a mask while working out topic, but hopefully I can give some tips based on my own experience that can work for you all as well! Also, I’m sure everyone has different styles and materials of masks, but one thing I can say for certain is that I was grateful for my third mask. 

3. Spandex Mask - This one is just a basic cloth/spandex one that I decorated myself and is more of a stylish one that I wore into the studio and out of the studio. This one was not damp with the workout sweat and made me overall more comfortable to continue on with the day’s errands and even just for the drive home.

I hope this helps you continue your fitness with a little bit more comfortably during this time!

A virtual high-five!


*This blog is meant to provide tips on adapting to new routines and procedures and is not a statement that these mask types or wearing one will prevent sickness and/or your own personal comfort levels.

Monday, August 3, 2020

Adapting to the “New Normal”

In March, the everyday errands, gatherings, and entertainment in our lives stopped with a grinding halt. It may have been welcomed for some of us at first (to an extent) as a reason to spend more time with our immediate loved ones, draw/paint more, or finally attempt those overdue house projects on our list. Others have been on the front lines and battling Coronavirus firsthand. Either way, it has been a stressful journey and you are not alone.

We are now being told we can patron certain businesses with very strict mask rules, social distancing, etc., but this provides angst as we’ve seen other places in the country close and reopen to only have to close again. Before you go somewhere, you have to familiarize yourself with their rules and each place is different since we are all learning this together.

Masks have become the new latest accessory adorned with gemstones, designs, or logos of our favorite places. While it’s fun to see how creative people can be, it becomes harder to get out the door, especially when you are halfway to the store and realize you forgot your mask and need to turn around. It’s also another thing to see someone refusing to wear it properly, or at all. The shear uncertainty of the pandemic’s ending makes it a normal thing for you to feel stressed.

Now that we’ve discussed the what and the why, we need to establish the “how”, how can we adapt to this new normal?

1.    Listen

The rules are there for a reason. Listen to them and understand that they are there for your safety.

2.    Plan Ahead

Unfortunately, those of us who thrive on spontaneity must learn to plan ahead. Use a planner to decide your itinerary for the day. Then call ahead to the places you plan to patron so that you are aware of the new procedures that they have in place. Also, write them down so you don’t have to remember what they were from the last time you went.

3.    Socially Distance on a Regular Basis

Before this, we like to think you would stay away from a person coughing or sneezing in public, especially someone that appears to have a cold. However, this virus makes it hard to determine if someone is sick, so we must not be within 6 feet of others even if we have a mask on, in general.

4.    Keep a Couple of Masks Around

          Keep a mask in your car. Make sure to wash it occasionally, but keeping one in your car allows you run to the store quickly and not have to worry about if you grabbed it from the house on the way out.

5.    Have Patience

Again, we are all learning this together and a little patience makes the whole process smoother for everyone. Remember that there will be longer wait times and new situations that people will need to learn to navigate.

6.    Talk to Others

Sharing tips and tricks to this “new normal” is encouraged! Talk to friends, family, co-workers about what you’re doing to stay safe. Also, if you’re comfortable with talking to them about how you’re feeling, they may tell you that they are feeling that way too. This commonality can help bring you closer in a time of need and make you feel a little bit more comfortable with life right now.

Stay safe out there everyone!

-Your Girl Fight Family

*This blog is meant to provide tips on adapting to new routines and procedures and is not a statement that all sickness will be prevented.

Monday, May 4, 2020

Add Some Girl Fight to your Zooms!

Want to add some Girl Fight fun to your Zoom meetings or workouts?  Download these Girl Fight Zoom backgrounds!

To download a background:
  1. Left click on the image below to open it in your web browser.
  2. Right click anywhere inside the image and left click on "Save image as..." in the drop-down menu.
  3. Save the image on your computer to access later via Zoom.
To use the background in Zoom, click here and follow the instructions from Zoom's Help site.

Monday, March 30, 2020

Why Exercise Is So Important Right Now

There is a lot of confusion about when life will get back to normal after the Coronavirus pandemic. When will we be able to go to the physical gym again? When will we be able to go to the places we normally would, including work?! (For those of us who were mandated to stay home).

Long story short, we only have projections and not a definite answer right now. In light of this, we can’t fall into thinking, “Oh just a couple of weeks without working out and it will be fine...I’ll jump back into it once this is over”. 

We need to stay in the habit of exercise, now more than ever. Exercise can help protect us in a variety of ways. Let Girl Fight Fitness tell you HOW!

1. Strengthening the Immune System

It is widely known that exercise helps with weight loss/maintenance. However, studies have been conducted to show the effects of exercise on overall health in regard to boosting the immune system.

Exercise helps in the production of antibodies and development of white blood cells, which help it stay healthy. This is not to say that exercise alone will make us invincible to the risk germs pose, but it’s a comforting and beneficial thing to have additional “fighters” on our side.

We must also remember to stay hydrated, get some sleep, and eat healthier to decrease risk from harmful outside factors!

2. Reducing Stress and Lifting Spirits

Exercise reduces stress by releasing endorphins. Endorphins are chemicals that are the body’s natural painkiller. It allows us to better handle outside influences that would otherwise feel impossible to overcome.

Should we insert a Legally Blonde quote here? While this is a fictional movie, Reese Witherspoon’s character accurately breaks down the effects of endorphins quite well by stating that they can make us happy, and therefore, ultimately reduce stress.

It’s so important for gyms to provide access to classes that would be normally expected during a time that is anything but normal. Girl Fight Fitness believes that sticking to your normal routine (even though the venue may be different) will prevent the potential derailment of a person’s fitness journey both mentally and physically! 

Throughout the duration of this shutdown, Girl Fight Fitness has added temporary online classes to the schedule for its members specifically for this reason.

Keep exercising and we hope to see you in person soon!

-Your Girl Fight Family

*This blog is merely to demonstrate how exercise can help protect us/reduce risk from harmful outside factors and is not a statement that all sickness will be prevented.

Monday, March 16, 2020

Reducing Risk During Times of Unknown

It happens every so often that our globe encounters viruses and bacterial spread beyond our conceivable control. It is a serious situation, but we say that the key thing to remember is to not panic. The most you can do is to take proper precautions to reduce the amount of risk.

So… how do we attempt to stay healthy in times of unknown? While you may choose to self-quarantine, some may not have that option. Therefore, Girl Fight Fitness wants to provide a few tips that may be helpful!

1.    Wash Your Hands

     Now with this being said, it will take a bit more than a douse of water to fight illness. We’ve all heard in some capacity that certain songs like “stayin' alive” or “happy birthday” is long enough of a time to wash your hands. No matter your song of choice as a guideline, just make sure to use soap! Also, if exiting/entering public places, make sure to have a barrier between you and any handles. For example, when in a restroom, use a paper towel to open the door and throw away the paper towel immediately.

2.    Stay Hydrated!!

It is SO important to keep your H2O levels up. Not only does hydration help your muscles achieve more optimal workout outcomes, it helps your body’s heart and cells work more efficiently, which is needed to stay healthy! 

3.    Carry Hand Sanitizer with You (if available)

You or someone you know may have that hidden stash of portable hand sanitizers that have been collected over the years. If you do, don’t forget to use it before touching your eyes, nose, and before EATING! Sometimes we forget how many hand foods we consume, so it is important to be extra self-aware in these moments.


     We can’t stress enough that you need to rest when you are sick. However, if you’ve come into contact with someone who has the most recent virus going around or you have been tested positive, PLEASE STAY HOME. It is not beneficial for you to workout when you need ALL of your energy to recover. It is also not beneficial to expose others or their loved ones to a virus with expansive impact. Even if you think you have just a common cold, you never know until you are tested. So please take proper precautions to keep our community as safe as you possibly can!

We at Girl Fight Fitness have added some temporary online classes for our members to maintain their fitness goals in a very convenient and, most of all, SAFE manner in these times of unknown.

Stay Healthy Girl Fighters!
-Your Girl Fight Family

Friday, February 28, 2020

What is Barre?

You might have seen Barre classes on our schedule as a recent addition at our Glenville location.  We were lucky enough to inherit dance studio bars in Studio B from a previous tenant, and our awesome instructor Gabby Hogan achieved her Barre teaching certification to make this class possible!

If you've never taken a Barre class before, you might be wondering what it's all about.  Luckily, we've asked Gabby to answer some common questions about Barre!

What is Barre class?

Barre is a workout that is inspired from ballet, pilates, and yoga. It focuses on strength, flexibility, and muscular endurance. In a Barre class, we are targeting the slow twitch muscle fibers with high reps and low intensity movements to push the muscle to the point of exhaustion, which means, yes, you are doing it correctly if your legs start to shake!

What are the typical exercises you do in a Barre class?

The typical exercises we do are always changing! We do a lot of pile squats, which look a lot like sumo squats that we do in our Girl Fight classes. For many of the exercises, we use the barre, as well as blocks and balls, to help make the movements that much more fun!

Is a Barre class okay for beginners?

Absolutely! With the Barre class, any level can take the class. We focus on smaller ranges of motion with higher reps. There are many modifications to all the movements.

Do you have to be coordinated or have dance experience to participate? 

No! All you need is yourself and be ready to have some fun!

What is your favorite thing about teaching Barre?

My favorite thing about teaching Barre is hard to choose. There are so many things I love about teaching it! I mean, for starters, I love the energy with each class and with everyone taking the class. I love the fun we can bring to the class with a little sing-a-long dance workout listening to Grease! I love it also because it helps you become more self aware of your body and focuses on the smaller ranges of movement, which is so helpful when taking other workout classes!

We hope you consider coming and checking out a class with us soon!

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Building Strength for Women

As women, sometimes it's overlooked to focus on muscle strengthening... until our doctors tell us to do it.

Or maybe you understand the importance of it, but just don't know how to get started.

The great news is it's very easy to get started.  Even just incorporating 1-2 strength workout sessions per week can make a huge difference in your fitness.

Not only does lean, toned muscle help protect your bones and joints (think of it as armor around your body), but performing weight-bearing exercise prevents against weak bones and diseases like osteoporosis and osteopenia -- which is increasingly important as we age and our hormones change.

Here are some quick and simple workouts that you can add to your weekly rotation to make sure you're strengthening your body.

Basic Strength Training Workout

Perform each exercise for 30 seconds each, moving quickly from exercise to exercise. At the end, rest for 60 seconds and repeat 1-2 more times (depending on time and fitness level).

  • Squats (with or without dumbbells)
  • Pushups (feet or knees)
  • Lunges - left leg only (with or without dumbbells)
  • Dumbbell overhead shoulder presses
  • Lunges - left right only (with or without dumbbells)
  • Dumbbell curls
  • Lying leg scissors
  • Triceps pushups (feet or knees)

Time-Crunch Strength Training Workout

For busy women short on time, this workout combines two movements in one to make sure you get a great workout in less time.  

Perform each exercise for 30 seconds each, moving quickly from exercise to exercise. At the end, rest for 60 seconds and repeat 1-2 more times (depending on time and fitness level).

  • Squat with an overhead dumbbell press at the top
  • Plank with alternating dumbbell row (feet or knees)
  • Woodchops (with dumbbell) - left side
  • Woodchops (with dumbbell) - right side
  • Dumbbell curl to overhead press

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

The Most Important Love is Self-Love

It’s that time of year again when all of the roses, chocolates, and candies come out to celebrate love on Valentine’s Day. Whether you live vicariously through America’s notorious rom-coms or enjoy dinner out with a loved one, we want you to remember that it’s not just about showing love and affection to others. Self-love is important to your journey on this crazy ride we call life and not just on the 14th, but always.

I know, I know… this doesn’t sound fitness related right? Well… At Girl Fight Fitness, we believe that a woman’s fitness journey includes overall health, mentally and physically. We all experience challenges in life that can result in neglecting ourselves. However, self-love can help us cope better with challenging days and keep healthy habits in place. Melanie Greenberg PhD, Psychology Today

Self-Love is about simply being kind to yourself, reminding yourself what you excel at, and making time for you. As a way to help through the hard and good times alike, we put together a list of activity-based self-love that may help you cultivate your relationship with YOU:
  • Exercise
  • Read
  • Sing
  • Dance
  • Meditate
  • Creating Art
  • Journaling/Drawing
  • Cook/Bake Healthy Recipes

While we certainly wish that “Netflix & Chill” could be on this list, make sure to do something active for your mind AND body often. You are your own powerhouse…so make sure to take care of yourself to sustain all aspects of life, both required and desired.