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Diaries of a Fitness Virgin: The Beginning

I have a confession: I don’t know how to exercise. Seriously. Due to a fateful combination of my being incredibly uncoordinated and incredibly out of shape, I don’t know how to work out. And due to yet another fateful combination of ignorance (as in, “What the hell am I doing? How do you even lift a weight?”) and intimidation (as in, “Everyone at this gym is so fit and strong and I can’t even run a mile!”), I’ve never really tried that hard to learn how to work out. My roommate once tried to get me to do push-ups and I collapsed on the floor after the fourth one.

It’s not that I haven’t tried before. I’ve taken a couple yoga classes here and there. While I was studying abroad in Argentina, I signed up for one of the most expensive gyms in Buenos Aires with a few of my friends, hoping that the exorbitant price would guilt me into exercising. And it did. At first, it was a chore. My friends would have to drag me in, reminding me of all the money I had already dropped on a fancy gym membership. After a while, it actually became an enjoyable experience. I never went more than three times a week because of my class schedule, and all I ever did was run on the treadmill and do crunches, but it started to feel good.

So I figured it’s time I actually figure this whole exercise thing out, and I’m going to stick to it. It’s going to be hard: as of right now, I can’t run a mile without stopping. I can’t even run half a mile without stopping. I still don’t know how to properly lift a weight. But figuring all of that out is part of the journey.

Here’s how it’s going to work: with Kelly at my (figurative, but sometimes also literal) side, I’m going to try out various fitness classes around the city. I’ll write about my experience there: what was the atmosphere like? How was the instructor? Were they helpful? Did I feel intimidated? How did I feel afterwards?

The ultimate goal is that I find out what combination of things works for me, while also giving fellow exercise virgins an inside look at the world of NYC fitness. A few things to remember, for me and for any other exercise virgins who want to join in on the fun:

It's not all about looks
One of the most talked-about benefits of working out is its effect on your physical appearance. While that’s great, it’s not the main focus of this project. On the contrary, my main goal is to improve how I feel on the inside. I want to feel healthier stronger, and more fit; if I also end up looking healthier, stronger and more fit, that’s just an added bonus.

Everyone was a beginner once
Let’s face it: for those of us who don’t know what we’re doing, gyms and fitness classes are intimidating and, quite frankly, pretty scary. Gyms are full of mysterious-looking equipment I have no idea how to use. Exercise classes are populated by devotees who know exactly what they’re doing. But they were beginners once, too. Everyone had to start somewhere, and you shouldn’t let yourself be intimidated or feel judged in a place where people are all striving to improve themselves.

Baby steps are key... 
Like I’ve said a million times already, I can’t run a mile without stopping. Naturally, I don’t expect to be able to run a marathon a week after my first workout. It’s important to pace yourself and to set realistic goals so you don’t get burnt out or give up when you don’t immediately achieve the results you want.

...But don’t underestimate yourself
Even though it’s important to pace yourself, it’s equally important to not underestimate yourself. My biggest problem when it comes to working out is that I’ll find something that’s comfortable and I’ll be scared to push myself beyond that. But pushing yourself to do better is the entire point.

 

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Warm Up Your Winter Skin

 

Freezing winter weather calls for lots of warm layers, hot drinks, and cute hats and gloves. Unfortunately another common effect of winter weather is dry, flaky skin and chapped lips. Here are some tips on how to have your best skin during – and despite – the coldest months of the year.

 

Hydrate from the inside out

Your skin is the largest organ in your body, and your body is approximately 60% water. When you’re properly hydrated, your skin is more plump and elastic which makes it less likely to crack

Staying hydrated isn’t only essential for maintaining healthy skin, but also for your overall well-being. When the temperature dips below freezing, you may be tempted to reach for a hot cup of coffee or cocoa, but these beverages can actually dehydrate you since they are diuretics. Make sure to stay hydrated by drinking enough water every day and by spreading out your water consumption throughout the day instead of drinking an entire day’s worth of water at once. If you consume a lot of water in a short period of time, your body and skin won’t be able to absorb it all!

Consider investing in a cool water bottle to ensure you’re always hydrated, whether you’re at the office or out for a run.

Additionally, apps like Plant Nanny (available for free download at the the App Store and Google Play) remind you to drink water throughout the day and reward you with a tiny virtual garden that grows as you stay hydrated. The app takes your height, weight, and activity level into account in order to gauge the amount of water you should be drinking each day.

 

Exfoliate to make way for clear skin

Exfoliating removes dry, dead skin cells from your skin’s surface and accelerates the growth of smooth, young cells in their place. Use a gentle exfoliant – like Frank Body’s Creamy Face Scrub or Lush’s Ocean Salt – once to three times a week depending on your skin type.  

Your face isn’t the only part of your body that needs to be exfoliated! When your lips are chapped, use a gentle lip product like Lush’s Lip Scrub to remove the dry skin. Ocean Salt also works wonders on dry elbows and knees.

Over-exfoliating can actually dry out your skin, so make sure not to exfoliate more than two or three times a week! Exfoliating in moderation is imperative, because it allows moisturizers to more fully penetrate your skin. Some products, like Aqua Glycolic Face Cream, will simultaneously exfoliate and moisturize.

 

Moisturize at least once a day

After washing or exfoliating your face, allow your skin to dry before applying a moisturizer. Make sure to use the right moisturizer for your skin type. If  you have oily or combination skin, use a light moisturizer like Yes To Carrots Day Facial Moisturizer or Glossier Priming Moisturizer, as heavier products can cause you to over-produce oil or break out. If you have dry skin, use extra-hydrating moisturizers like Clinique Moisture Surge Intense or First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream.

Don’t forget about the rest of your body! Products like Yes To Carrots Hand Cream, Cetaphil’s Daily Advance Ultra Hydrating Lotion, and CeraVe Renewing Skin Lotion will keep your skin soft from your neck to your toes.

 

Protect your skin from sun damage

Sun damage is the last thing on anyone’s mind during the harsh winter months, but it’s important to protect your skin year-round! Don’t forget to apply sunscreen to your face and any exposed areas of your body, even when the temperatures are below zero.


 

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Tighten Up Your Tights Game

I get asked a lot what is my favorite brand of leggings. Truth be told, there are a lot of brands that I love. And, I love all of them for very different reasons. Some provide me with extra support for a tough workout, some are super absorbent for a heavy sweat sesh and some just make my butt look better than even my favorite pair of jeans. Needless to say, I can talk about leggings until I am blue in the face but today I will start by sharing 5 types of leggings you need NOW:

1. The Perfect Print: 

The Upside feels so damn good. I am obsessed with their fabrics. Plain and simple, these pants feel luxurious. I have a solid pair of grey leggings from the brand but I love purchasing their printed versions. They create limited quantities so when a print is gone; it's GONE. I love the print in The Upside Dark Lily NYC leggings particularly because of the color palette. It has some of my favorite neutrals including grey, blush and blue. I would rock this with a pink or grey cashmere sweater for a cool post workout look. If you are one of those people who freak out if your underwear and bra don't match, you can wear the matching sports bra too, it would look amazing under a sheer top.

2. Sheer Sexiness:

These days a pair of black leggings with some sheer panels is a must. You absolutely have to have a pair of leggings that makes the guy on the treadmill next to you wonder if you managed to sneak in some undergarments. You never know, you could end up walking out of your favorite class with a new number. I really like these Onzie Colorblock Track Leggings they come in other colors too if your version of "black" is a "navy". This pair from Forever21 will give you the same effect and save you a couple of bucks if you are not ready to fully invest in this look. I would wear these bad boys with a longer top to balance this look. I'm a big fan of this Nesh V-neck tee with a sheer panel in the front. It still keeps this look fun and sexy while giving that guy on the treadmill a reason to remain curious. I am lately obsessed with my new APL sneakers that have specks of black, gold and silver in them, it really takes this look up a notch (please note these sold out so I have shared an equally cool version below). I would go with those on the treadmill and a wedge sneaker off the treadmill. 

3. The Jean Replacement:

Besides fitness being my line of work, I do find myself replacing jeans with leggings very, very often these days. Reason being is I am more comfortable and I feel sexier in leggings. Something about being in a material made for movement and self-improvement gets me pretty giddy. There are some really great leggings, which in my book are a no brainer in replacing jeans. I love these Joah Brown Cut Loose Leggings , I pretty much would double down on Joah Brown and rock the leggings with this sexy tee or maybe a slouchy sweater. Add a pair of Converse Chuck Taylors (I'm a high top kind of gal) sneakers or Adidas Originals to be the queen of cool.

I also think a pair of lustrous leggings fit the profile of a jean replacement. Koral Activewear makes a great pair, you also can't go wrong with a pair from someone who has been making leggings cool and affordable for a while now, American Apparel. A moto legging can also replace a jean or even the same look you’d achieve when rocking leather pants. Add some moto boots for extra edge. 

4. The Bold Print

These leggings differs from the first pair of leggings I described because this is a fun print that speaks more to your personality then what matches 75% of the shirts in your closet. Going with a personality packed print from Zara Terez like these Above NYC Leggings will definitely turn heads as you walk to your favorite class. Being a New Yorker these speak to me. They carry endless prints that pop including a collaboration with Instagram's Mister Krisp. Remember that you can save 25% using promo code: Kelly25 when you shop Zara Terez. If you have a daughter or little sis, you can rock matching tights! I would stick with pretty basic tops when rocking these prints, they are meant to stand out!


5. A Pop of Color

Every so often, I don't wear black (surprise) and I try and wear a pop of color when I'm not rocking a print! A fierce color provides a subtle intensity. I feel like I really mean business when I decide to rock a pair of colorful leggings. I love red leggings, like these Vimmia Core Leggings, blue is also a fun hue; you can splurge on these Lucas Hugh statement leggings or rock a solid metallic for a little extra edge. I recently added these Alala Metallic Cropped Leggings to my leggings family. I'd also let these pants be the star of the show and keep the top simple. At most, I'd rock a graphic tee like this Private Party Avocado Toast one (yum).

I hope you enjoyed this post! Tag me on insta to share some of your KORE Style inspired looks @KOREbyKelly xoxo

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Monday Mantra

Reprogram your mind. Eradicate negative patterns by removing certain words from your inner monologue. Words like can't and won't will weigh you down and take you further and further away from reaching any of your goals. Fear of judgment and acceptance make us default to some of these words. The possible becomes impossible when we fuel fear. Fear can be crippling but can be minimized when you focus on the present moment. The past will cause you to identify with pain and the future will provide an unnecessary level of anxiety. Remaining focused on the present moment will allow you to nurture a better relationship with yourself because it eliminates the ego's incessant chatter in your mind.  You are listening so, when you say things like I can't or I'm not enough, you begin to create negative patterns and turn words into manifestations. 

One of my New Year's resolutions is to be kinder to myself. We place so much pressure on ourselves by trying to live up to our competitive surroundings. My mission is not to change the world externally but to change my world internally. Now, when I wake up every morning, I have a quick chat with myself. I do this before I am out of bed, check my phone or drink coffee. I let the very first few things that I hear and say be words of kindness and love. First, I give thanks for being alive and then I begin to say things like I am loved, I am kindness, I am healthy, I am whole, I am prosperity and I am enough. These are just a few examples of the things that I find useful; you can say anything that resonates deeply with you. In essence, you should be reversing all of the negative constructs that you normally say into positive ones. Once you begin to harness these positive words, you will begin to reprogram not only your mind but also your life. Anything you deeply believe becomes possible. We are always seeking to have healthier relationships with people in our lives and to fuel better communication why wouldn't the same apply to the relationship with ourselves? Join me this week on a journey to being kinder to oneself. Find the mantras that resonate with you and have them be the first words you utter every morning. As the day passes, if you find yourself removed from the present moment repeat words of love and encouragement to yourself. It will ground you and give you the extra push you need to stay focused and determined. 

xoxo

Kelly

 

 

 

 

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From The Boardroom To The Barre

There are a lot of fitness brands that can fully transition into an après work-out scenario. But that scenario is usually brunch, errands, cocktails (why not) or something that allows a loud printed legging or a cute crop top to come into the mix. What can be challenging is finding pieces that can be transitioned into and out of a work environment. As some of you know, I was in corporate before I decided to work for the coolest boss ever (me), and I also had the privilege of traveling the world for work. Once, I landed in Singapore after the longest flight of my life. My room wan't ready so I showered in a tiny bathroom where the toilet and shower were practically one. You may think it was very James Bond of me but it was not sexy at all. I had also watched The Fault In Our Stars on the plane so I was very emotionally unstable; the bathroom shower did me in. It would have been sweet to have had the opportunity to rely on what I wore on the plane if had to come down to it. I mean, let's be real, I would have still needed to wash my face and reapply deodorant but what if my flight was delayed and I needed to jet straight to my meeting? When you have a busy day the slightest shift in your schedule can spiral things out of control, so it's great to be prepared for life's little surprises. 

I was really excited to learn about ADAY and their "wear-anywhere" line of clothing. A huge distinction is that ADAY does not consider itself part of the "athleisure" pack, they are instead creating a new category that speaks to the brand's high fashion lens and truly transitional pieces. The goal is that these pieces complement your active and spontaneous life. I love that idea. I'm pretty spontaneous (or at least I like to think so) but I am also well aware that sometimes life has its own plan for my day. Maybe you get pulled off the wait-list and you get in to your favorite fitness class or maybe you worked out hard that morning, slayed a pitch at work and want a celebratory drink afterwards. In any event, you shouldn't have to compromise your life and the decisions you make based on what you are wearing. That sounds kind of ridiculous when you think about it, no?

A lot of the tech-luxe fabrics help with moisture which I think is also good in every day work scenarios. Every time I had a big pitch, I was a sweaty mess. It's nice to think that there can be clothes to support you through high intensity moments in and out of the gym. I decided to take this concept for a test drive. I brought a couple of staples from my closet to see if I could put together some "boardroom" appropriate looks. I put together 6 looks for you that can take you from the Boardroom to the Barre! You would only need to pack one transitional piece in these scenarios for your sweat sesh, I'm sure it will take up less space than your laptop in your bag.  These gorgeous photos were shot at the ADAY SOHO office in NYC. I'm sure you will be tempted to pick up some of these pieces so enjoy $10 OFF of your first order using the promo code ADAYlovesKelly (the love is mutual).

Scroll to the end of this post to get some fashion and business inspiration from Founders Nina Faulhaber and Meg He. These rockstars were recently featured on Forbes 30 Under 30 under the Retail & E-Commerce category. Forbes called me too but being that I am a mature 33, they couldn't feature me.

 

LOOK 1 "PUT ME ON THE SHORTLIST"

ADAY HERO PIECE: CRASH CAUSE TOP IN BLACK  

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:

·       A Printed Silk Scarf

·       Office Appropriate Shorts & Tights (this will depend on what industry you are in, use common sense people, don't send me on an email saying I got you in trouble with HR)

·       Boyfriend Blazer

·       Quilted Purse

·       Statement Ring

LOOK 2: "COOL, CALM & CULLOTTED"

ADAY HERO PIECE: CRASH CAUSE TOP IN BLACK  

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:

·       Black Culottes

·       Animal Printed Pumps

·       Structured Bag

·       Cuff Earrings

LOOK 3: "I'M THE BOSS" 

ADAY HERO PIECE:  LIKE A BOSS SWEATSHIRT 

WHAT YOU'LL NEED: 

·       Skater Skirt

·       Tailored Blazer

·       Classic Pumps (with a pop of color)

·       Neutral Clutch

·       Classic Earrings

LOOK 4 "I MEAN BUSINESS"

ADAY HERO PIECE: HAIL YES TRACK PANTS IN MATTE BLACK  

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:

·       Black Leather Shell

·       Tuxedo Blazer

·       Animal Printed Pumps

·        Studded Bracelet

LOOK 5 "BOOKED SOLID"

ADAY HERO PIECE: HAIL YES TRACKPANTS IN WET LOOK BLACK

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:

·       White Silk Blouse (cuff links optional)

·       Black Low Heeled Booties

LOOK 6: "THAT'S A WRAP" (add pumps to dress this up!)

ADAY HERO PIECES: HAIL YES TRACKPANTS IN WET LOOK BLACK, HIT THE SKY TANK AND UP IN THE AIR JACKET

WHAT YOU'LL NEED:

·       Super cool kicks

·       The desire to fly, run, sweat and live

I asked Nina and Meg....

1. What is your in-office style? Do you have any styling tips to share with us?

Nina: I like to style ADAY with my other favorite brands such as Phillip Lim or COS. I normally keep my outfit the same from day to night but change shoes and lipstick: sneakers and Glossier coconut balm during the day, and boots and red lipstick at night. At the moment, our Brakes On Leggings are my all day, all night go to and I've recently made it a uniform, so it takes out the stress out of my mornings.

Meg: I like to add in texture + a print to our staple pieces — my favorites are Preen, Erdem and Alexander McQueen. A black Dream Harder tank on textured black on differently textured black is an exciting combo, then + lipstick (Heat Wave by NARS) and I'm all set for day or evening (yes, I'm lazy / efficient :-)

2. Any New Year's resolutions to help support your continued success in 2016?

Nina: I'm going to celebrate happy moments and enjoy the ride.

Meg: Be happy with where I am. Too often I've been frustrated or angry at not being good enough or fast enough or doing enough. Here's to recognizing that the present is a beautiful place.

The yogi in me can't help but absolutely love these responses. I'd take a play from their book any day! Stay present and watch the magic unfold. xo

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Monday Mantra

I hope everyone had a lovely weekend! The first full week of the New Year is now complete. This provides us with a great opportunity to stop and check in...Did you set unreasonable goals? Do you feel like you are struggling before you have even started or are you already surpassing the goals you set? In any event, no need to obsess whether or not your answer is the former or the latter. What you need to focus on is getting and staying on the path of accomplishing your goals. The way to do that is by setting small goals that are attainable. Small and attainable goals will keep you motivated all year long. Once you tackle a few, you will build trust within yourself knowing that you have the capacity to fuel and conquer them.

My mantra for this week is start TODAY. Set these goals and don’t wait for 2017, don’t wait for the “perfect” time before you kick-start your life. Simply, start today. That in itself is a small and attainable goal: starting. Don’t race for a finish line; instead, hang on for the ride of your life.   

Wishing you oodles of love, light and happiness this week xo

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Amplify Your Leg & Butt Workout With This Little Prop

Photo by Elena Eshleman (@elenaeshlemanphotography)

It's human nature to want to "DTR" just about everything in your life including your relationship with you favorite barrista. At first, your face is familiar then, he kind of remembers how you like your coffee and before you know it, you are on a first name basis making small talk every morning.  Fitness is pretty much like any relationship, you want to see growth and progress. I must make one caveat using the cliche saying: "you must learn to walk before you can run" or something like that. It is important that you are honest with yourself and ask "Am I really ready for the next phase?" If your ego takes control then you might find yourself moving onto something that you aren't ready for and all of that effort will be fruitless because your foundation just isn't strong enough. There are tons of things I can physically do and there are so many more I am still working towards. That's the fun part! Otherwise, if I could easily do everything what would the point be? How would I ever measure growth and progress? 

Getting to the point (ugh so hard for me)... Before trying some of these moves, you should ask yourself a simple question, "how's my form?" If you are killing it at squats, getting the thighs super low and parallel to the ground and maintaining that natural curve in your spine then let's move forward. Let's add some weights or in this case, add a block into the mix. Let's keep the challenge alive! I was doing enough squats and lunges where I was getting kind of bored. I knew I needed to up the ante in order to stay committed and to see better results. So, I decided to take my yoga block and use if for something besides yoga. I placed that little sucker under my foot and it unleashed a whole new world. I couldn't walk for two days. It has officially become my best friend, a tool that lets me leverage height to add a new level of intensity and balance to recruit new muscles into the mix. I made this YouTube video showcasing a short sequence with squats and some lunge variations. You can follow it or use it as inspiration next time you are ready to take your relationship to the next level with your squat or lunge game.

My ridiculously awesome pants are Zara Terez. Use promo code: Kelly25 if you'd like to get a pair too, they have lots of other fun prints. You'll save 25% off with the code! I wore these bad boys in a Core Power Yoga class in San Diego a few weeks ago and the fabric was amazing in the heat!

Squat it out. xo Kelly

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Winter Essentials To Keep You Moving!

Yes, it's freezing but NO, that will not slow me down! Winter can be brutal, but playing catch-up on your fitness routine come spring will be way worse. Think about it: does that groundhog ever look fit when he comes out of his burrow in February? Is anyone saying, "Wow, check out his biceps?" If we're anything like our furry friends, we eat a little extra come winter -- but since we don't move into a cave and hunker down until spring, it is imperative that we KEEP IT MOVING! "I get it, when the weather dips below freezing, we all kind of wish we could stay warm inside our burrow." However; you don’t have to hibernate or suffer in the cold. There are so many options that can keep you warm while you brave the outdoors, whether you're heading to your favorite class or working up a sweat outside, there are solutions! Here are some of my favorite pieces to keep you stylishly moving all winter long. xo

 

SHOP THESE LOOKS:

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New Year, Best You!

Photo by Thomas Northcut/Photodisc / Getty Images
Photo by Thomas Northcut/Photodisc / Getty Images

I hate it when people say "New Year, New You." The reason being is that I kind of take that personally! What the heck is wrong with the current me? Let's be honest, the time simply changed from one minute to the next. It went from 11:59 PM to 12:00 AM like it does every single night the other 364 days of the year. I just spent 12 months with the "old me" and I don't think she was so bad that we need to completely replace her. How about a 2.0 version? That is the rant that goes on in my head every time I hear someone say "New Year, New You." As a result, I would like to plant a new seed. How about "New Year, Better You" or we can reach for the stars together and claim "Best You."

On a very positive note, there is this crazy momentum that develops with the thought of a "New Year." What is so symbolic about the change from one year to the next and how do we take advantage of the positive energy that it cultivates? I wonder, what inspiration does it provide that we were lacking all year long? Let's harness that inspiration and have it transcend across minutes, days, months and years for as long as we can. We should be looking at each new day as a new opportunity. There's no need to wait for a new year to begin in order to make positive changes in your life. Let's make a resolution together and vow that we will take advantage of the great momentum that this new year has afforded us, but let's not have it stop at the end of January when resolutions fizzle. Let's really take each and every moment as an opportunity to create and cultivate the life we want.

I spoke to Sarah Bogdanski, a certified Life Coach, to get you some amazing tips on how to set goals and maintain them in 2016. Her info and links to her website are at the bottom of this post:

Kelly: There are no dumb questions and we are in a safe space so I will ask, what is a Life Coach?  

Sarah: A Life Coach is someone who helps others make a change, move forward, or work towards a specific goal. A life coach helps you get from where you are in your life right now, to where you want to be, and may work with you on your relationships, career, confidence, finances, health, business venture – or anything really! They can help you change your thinking, help you get un-stuck, conquer fear, and inspire you to be your very best self. They are objective and non-judgmental, support you and your goals, motivate and inspire you, hold you accountable, and cheer you on as you achieve what you want and desire.

Kelly: What made you become a Life Coach?

Sarah: A few years back I was at a turning point in my life. My life was generally good, but I wasn’t really happy. I felt stuck – because I had all these ideas of the life I envisioned, but couldn’t seem to figure out how to get there. I felt like I was on auto-pilot with my career, I wasn’t happy with my daily routine of life, and I couldn’t seem to meet the right guy. So I hired my own life coach, and got really clear on my vision of what I wanted in life. I was able to get past mental blocks in my thinking and resolve some fears and limiting beliefs that I have developed over the course of my lifetime. In this process, I felt like I discovered a pot a gold! Within months of this profound experience, my life completely changed, and everything I dreamed of became a reality. I moved to a new city into my dream apartment, fell in love with an amazing man, started to earn and save more money, and began putting the wheels in motion to get my coaching certification. It’s like all the clouds in my head had moved out of the way, and I was now so focused on moving forward toward my dreams. With this life changing experience, I realized I wanted to be that person for others, and help them create positive changes in their life and relationships too; to get off auto-pilot with their life, get un-stuck, move the clouds out of the way and create an extraordinary life they dream of! 

Kelly: What has it personally taught you?

Sarah: That we all have the wisdom within ourselves. That we are each the owners of our lives, and not victims of past circumstances. That we can create the life we envision and that we all hold the key to our own happiness and success. Lastly, that should all live life on our terms – no one else's!

Kelly: Everyone says “New Year, New You.” what are your thoughts on that? Should it be a concept of a "New You?" Or the ability to create and shift into a better you?

Sarah: In the New Year, there is a sense of renewal and starting fresh, which is a wonderful feeling to have. And with this sentiment, it’s a great time to plan how to create a better, happier you. I believe who we are in this moment is a sum of all of our experiences, thoughts, choices and emotions that have led us to this point in time. And while all of those things led us to where we are today, we always have the choice to change, pivot or accelerate at any given point. So yes – recreating yourself and shifting, even amplifying who you are in this new season, is all up to you! The beauty is, not just in the New Year, but at any moment in time, we have the ability to create a better version of ourselves.

Kelly: People tend to set resolutions in the New Year but have difficulty conquering them. Any thoughts here?

Sarah: We all have so many ideas of what we want to change or goals we want to achieve. The problem is, many times they stay in our head and never move into action. Typically this is because our thinking holds us back – whether it’s because we’re too focused on what we don’t have, we are dwelling on the past, we don’t have clarity in what exactly we want, we feel overwhelmed or have fears about making changes. 

Kelly:  If you had to boil it down what would be 3 essential tips to starting the year right?

Sarah: My 3 Essential Tips are all rooted in mindset and how this then translates into action. By focusing on your mindset first, you’ll put yourself in a strong place to move forward and achieve creating the best version of you. Here are my tips:

1. Celebrate Your Wins 
Before you start working on a better version of yourself in the New Year, be sure to acknowledge all you’ve accomplished already. Take a look back at the past year and write down all successes you already achieved and all the awesomeness that you are today. This practice will direct your thinking to a positive place. And once you’re in that positive groove with your thoughts, they will lead you to make better choices and take better action to your greatness. Be grateful for your past successes, and let those wins be your fuel to really BLAST OFF in the new year!

2. Get Clear on Your Vision 
Many times we tend to live life by what others or society expects of us. Or we stay stuck in a certain place because it’s our safety zone – like a career we’ve been in (even though we aren’t happy) because we’re climbing the ladder and feel like we’re too far ahead to make a change – or in a dead-end relationship that isn’t going anywhere but you’d rather stay in it and be miserable than start over again.  I challenge you to own your path this year. It can be hard to do, but allow yourself to get out of your own head (or stop listening to what others’ want for you) and focus on your heart and what it’s telling you. Listen deeply and decide what you truly want and desire for YOU. From there, get it out on paper. Once you write something down, it becomes much more powerful and helps the process begin to take shape.

3. Take Action & Get Support There’s no better time to creating the better version of you than right this very moment! Timing is never perfect, and to get started you just need to put one foot in front of the other. Baby steps are good! And be realistic with your goals. If you want to start going to the gym, going from 0 days a week to 5 days a week right away is extreme, and setting yourself up by biting more than you can chew typically doesn’t result in success, but failure. Instead, start slow and go once or twice a week. After you do that for a while and get into a nice groove, up it to more days. Or let’s say you want to save a certain amount of money this year. Make sure you look at your budget and be realistic with your savings each week. Come up with a do-able number – because if you overestimate you may drop off from saving after just a few weeks because it’s too much of a financial struggle. Over time, you will build toward your goal by taking realistic, smaller steps to get there. In addition, have someone support you, hold you accountable, and cheer you on in the process. Be it a friend, family member, significant other, or coach, having someone you can confide in and have as a sounding board on your journey to greatness will be just what you need to keep you on track and celebrate with you as you cross the finish line.

Kelly: What do you need to do to stick to the plan?

Sarah: Persistence. Even if you’re working hard towards your goal and there seem to be bumps in the road – don’t give up. These bumps help you grow and make you stronger each and every time you get past them. So if you’re trying to eat better, and you have a day where you aren’t sticking to plan, don’t throw your goal out the window and give up. Be kind to yourself and accept that moment, and then focus back to your vision and keep moving forward. When I was younger, my mom once told me “If you insist and you persist, you achieve and conquer.” I never forgot that message, it’s true! Little by little, those moments of persistence will guide you to conquering your goals.                             

Kelly: What area do you find people are the most challenged in? What’s your advice for getting past this?

Sarah: People are really tough on themselves. If they have a bad day or don’t achieve exactly what they wanted when they wanted it, they beat themselves up over it and feel like a failure. And when that happens, many times this is the place where people give up completely. My advice is to be kind to yourself and treat yourself with compassion. We’re all human and we all have tough moments or a bad day. If you trip along the way, be curious as to why you had that challenge and then pick back up and keep it moving. Sometimes those moments that seem the toughest are actually right before our biggest breakthroughs.

Let’s get personal:

Kelly: Printed or basic leggings? 

Sarah: Printed all the way.

Kelly: What is your favorite brand in the athleisure space?

Sarah: Right now I am digging Lululemon! They’re fun and funky and hug your body in JUST the right places.

Kelly: What is your favorite/go-to sweat session?

Sarah: Yoga and Pilates have become integral to my routine. Yoga for relaxation and stretching, Pilates for overall toning and strength (mental and physical).

Kelly: Are you a luxury lover, a backpack kind of gal or something in the middle?

Sarah: Somewhere in the middle, but I can go both ways too!

Kelly:  Donuts, cakes or cookies?

Sarah: Chocolate chip cookies with sea salt sprinkled on top!

I couldn't agree more with the advice Sarah shared. Be kind to yourself and believe that you have endless opportunities to make any enhancements to your life that you truly want to make at any point in time. 

Interested in learning more about how to work with Sarah? Click here to arrange a free coaching consult and learn about her private and group coaching programs.

About Sarah:  

Sarah Bogdanski is an NYU Certified Coach who helps individuals who are ready for positive change in their lives and relationships. She works with clients all over the country and from different walks of life. Sarah aims to help people uncover mental blocks, conquer fear, and support them in creating an action plan they are excited about. Contact Sarah for a free coaching consult. Connect with Sarah on Facebook and Instagram, and sign up for her newsletter at www.sarahbogdanski.com for inspiration and tips around life and relationships, plus receive insider access to special programs and promotions.

 

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Monday Mantra

It is now the end of another month and for those of you in the US who just celebrated Thanksgiving, it is also the end of another big holiday. This year, I was super grateful to have some contemplative down time especially in the midst of holiday madness. Thanksgiving tends to be my favorite holiday because it is not about the gifts, it is about spending time with those you care for. Christmas or gift giving holidays place such a heavy emphasis on what you "get" and in some cases that makes people focus on what they "don't have". Every holiday should be a celebration of what you do have. Anything additional that comes into your life as a result of that holiday is an added perk but should not be the focal point of the celebration. Don't get me wrong, I do love to give and get a great present but, I do not give it authority to determine the state of happiness. I plan on being happy with or without any gifts as the greatest gift that I possess is me, and that can not be bottled or boxed. It can not be contained or owned.

This Thanksgiving was kind of comical. We had a small fire in the stove. BTW, those yams are dangerous. Once you put aluminum foil on them they should be classified as a weapon. We had to do a lot of improvising as a result. My boyfriend ran out and found a dutch oven right as all the stores were closing and we ate about 4 hours behind schedule. In spite of us all getting hangry, we had each other and we knew it was only a matter of time before we could sit down and celebrate. This placed all the emphasis on the food and how grateful we were to salvage all of our hard work.

We had some new friends join us this year and one friend printed out all of these wonderful sayings and stapled them to lotto scratchy games. After she distributed them, each person went around the room and read theirs. It was a really nice thing to do. Ironically we all received ones that spoke to us on a very personal level. The below is the message that I was provided with, one that reminded me to be grateful for all moments in life, even the difficult ones as it all makes me who I am. It is nice to be grateful for the good in our lives. It is also very important to see and understand the lessons life provides us that aren't so good. I am not saying you should love or celebrate the "bad" but assess it and leverage it to further guide you on your journey. Ask yourself what it helps you uncover that maybe you were unable to see or understand before. Every experience provides a new perspective and a deeper understanding of who we are but it takes a willing soul to search for the truth in every scenario.

Wishing you a week where you are able to "see it all" and appreciate what life has to offer in every scenario. With love and gratitude, Kelly xo




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I am Grateful For YOU Giveaway

Hi Friends!

I could not be more grateful for all of YOU. I am so touched by all of the love and support that I have received since I decided to launch KORE by Kelly. You all inspire me each and every single day to keep living my dreams. Without you, the struggle would have been harder and each step forward less sweet. I whole heartedly appreciate each and every one of you for reading, following and sharing. I appreciate that you give me words of kindness, with out knowing, on days I need it most. 

With that said, I am hosting my FIRST ANNUAL (which means that I am here to stay and not going anywhere) I am Grateful for YOU Giveaway!  To enter, you have to follow me on instagram (or already be following me) @KOREbyKelly and tag a friend who you are grateful for this year! YES, let's spread the love! A random winner will be sepected on Friday at 6 pm EST. The prize is $100 to one of my fave online stores inflow STYLE (who I am also grateful for).  In case you forgot, it's the online store I featured in "Be The Life Of The Party" post with the awesome pineapple pants. They have amazing brands like Saucha, Dharma Bums, GOLDSHEEP, Blue Life Fit and so many more! Please share with friends, love you, mean it.




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Monday Mantra

Get out a pen and a piece of paper. Note: this is not an exercise for you to write down every material thing you would like for the holidays. Instead, begin to write every little thing you are grateful for, anything from clean drinking water to the people who fill your entire existence with light and love. I have done this exercise before as a way to be more appreciative of all of the good in my life and I honestly could not stop writing once I started. It's okay if you have a few material things on there i.e. your home or a Chanel bag but I would keep the material things limited on your list and focus on the things that can not be quantified. People, freedom, health, that all has no monetary value. It's value is so immense, it can not be measured. I know that the holidays can be a little stressful. If you are hosting, it is a lot of pressure to get everything right and to please everyone. Sometimes the idea of being with so much family all at once can also be stressful. My advice is to make this list now and read it first thing on Thursday morning to keep you grounded, to give you perspective and to start the day off right. Be grateful that you have people to share Thanksgiving with and food to eat. This is one of my favorite holidays as it is not about the presents but instead about the present moment that you share with others. Last thing, let the people on that list know that you are grateful for them. Sharing that with someone has more impact than you can imagine.

I'd like to take a moment to let you know that each and every one of you who read my blog, watch my videos and who have shown such loving support are at the top of my list this year.

Wishing you a beautiful beginning to this lovely holiday week.

With much love and gratitude,

Kelly


 

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All That Glitters

It's easy to wear silver, sequence or gold and feel like you should host a party for your friends and hang from the ceiling so they can dance underneath you. Good news is that you don't need to serve as a human disco ball if you feel like brining some glitter and glitz to the party. Silver and gold ARE the bright and shiny object so give in and let it take center stage. Give these prima donnas their moment to shine and rock subdued items to let them stand out. Alternatively, some complimentary accents can help to turn up the volume just a little more.  Follow me, I'll show you the way:

* SCROLL DOWN TO THE END OF THIS POST TO SHOP THIS LOOK*

In this first look, I took a standard outfit where I would normally wear jeans and I replaced them for a little oomph. Cue: shiny tights from Top Shop! It says they are bonze in the description, to me they are like a goldish/bronze. What I really like about them is that they have a subtle snake pattern with hints of black outlining the snake like pattern. That outline made it very easy to pair them. I wore a black cami that I got from Top Shop. I would highly recommend one of these as a closet staple. They come in an array of colors. I love the boudoir like straps especially under my v-neck cashmere boyfriend sweater, it balances the masculinity in the sweater with some feminine sexiness. I wore the Saucha sports bra I featured a few weeks ago under the cami, the straps matched perfectly. Finishing touches were my Loubie booties and gold mirror DIFF sunglasses, they add a tad more shine. This look is pretty versatile, you can totally rock this for a fun brunch, night out (and ditch the sweater) or for a holiday family event.

So I am totally obsessed with this dress. Full disclaimer: it's a little bit itchy, but sometimes you have to make sacrifices. I love this body hugging number and the amount of shine is just perfect. I took this look up a notch by adding a little but more glitz via complementary accents. The Chanel cuff that I am rocking is PERFECT with this look. I am also wearing a fur coat by Yves Solomon which makes me ready for pretty much for anything fabulous. I wore a spanx slip under the dress because of the itchiness and if I'm being honest, I use them in lieu of undergarments when wearing a very form fitting number. My Chanel cross body bag, Loubie booties and some black sunnies are the icing on this silver cake. In both looks, I kept my make- up pretty natural, no need to make this party into a circus.

I hope you enjoyed these looks and that they provide a little bit of holiday inspiration. Looking forward to sharing more looks with you in the upcoming weeks. 

Thanks Nat for the wonderful pictures.

Love you, mean it.

xoxo

SHOP THIS LOOK:

METALLIC BRONZE SNAKE LEGGINGS

STRAPPY PLUNGE CAMI

SAUCHA HEIDI CROP

DIFF SUNGLASSES

GLITTERY TURTLENECK DRESS

 

 

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My Fitness Beauty Routine

Happy HUMP Day AKA Wellness Wednesday!

I pretty much share what I eat, wear, how I work out...you name it. Figured it was time to share some insights on my Fitness Beauty Routine. I swear by all the products in this video and seriously would be very angry if my make-up bag were ever misplaced. I hope you enjoy and don't forget to SUBSCRIBE to my YouTube Channel so you never miss a beat xoxo


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Monday Mantra

It has been an emotionally tough weekend for many of us. The attacks in Paris were nothing short of devastating. One can only feel sadness when facing the reality that this is the very world we live in. I continue to send love and prayers to everyone there and around the world who is in the midst of true suffering and I encourage you to take a few minutes out of your day to send loving vibrations. 

Times like this, it is truly important to kiss the ground you walk on, tell your loves how much they mean to you and rejoice for each new day that life has to offer. Unfortunately, it sometimes takes acts of terror and violence to bring us back into the present moment. It should not take tragedy for someone to have gratitude for the abundance in their life. We should be in a constant state of gratitude and presence. Each and every one of us has abundance in our lives. Open your eyes, ears and heart to the possibility of understanding what true abundance is. Look for the good in your life today and every day in order to manifest more abundance and to enjoy the life that has been gifted to you.

Sending much love and compassion to you and our brothers and sisters around the world.

xoxo

Kelly


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Rock Velvet Like A Vixen

Well, the holiday season is practically upon us so I am sure that you are going to need plenty of inspiration in the upcoming weeks. Being that it is almost Thanksgiving I am in a giving mood. I'll be sharing some awesome looks in the upcoming weeks you can rock this holiday season and any time you feel like looking like a fox.  A lot of these looks will make sure that you are the mashed potatoes, stuffing, cranberry sauce, and apple pie of the party. I make that reference because I don't eat turkey and those are literally my favorite items on Thanksgiving. I'm jumping the gun and dreaming of Thanksgiving already. I need to SLOW down but I can't help myself with the Farmer's Market outside my apartment selling cider, pumpkins and pies (OH MY).  Until then, be conscious of your diet because these looks are ready to hug every little curve on that sweet bod. Let the parade begin. Scroll down to the end of the post for some links on these items, both central pieces were inspired by Nasty Gal. Thanks Nat and my hometown Astoria for the endless inspiration. Love you, mean it.

LOOK 1: RED VELVET:

This little number is tastier than the infamous dessert. This dress is from Nasty Gal, they know how to create the right balance between sexy and edgy. I totally vibe that. I paired this number with black opaque tights so you can't see what I had for lunch in this picture (well, hopefully not) and some Christian Loubies. I like the bootie for a less formal look, I would rock a pump if I wanted to do the impossible and take this up a notch. I put on some statement earrings that I already had, they happened to just match perfectly. They don't get a lot of play from me so I was excited to wear them. I think: GO BIG OR GO HOME with this look. Who wears velvet on a basic day? A little fur, Chanel and a red lip can never steer you wrong. Don't be afraid to be as decadent as a red velvet cake when rocking a look like this.


LOOK 2: BABY'S GOT THE BLUES:

Although this romper has a plunging neckline it has a more "conservative look", I am obviously using that term loosely here. What I am trying to say is that this look has more subtle sexiness to it as opposed to the red velvet body con dress. Got me? I am rocking this Nasty Gal romper with the same opaque tights and booties. I added on a structured blazer that I scored last year at Intermix by Marissa Webb. Most structured blazers would work with this look. The earrings are also another pair that I found in my jewelry box that I hadn't worn in ages. I don't wear my opulent pieces often but once again, the velvet and plunging neck line compelled me to accessorize. Velvet brings out the baroque in me so I also added a gold clutch that I have had probably since the 17th century. I think that both of these looks are so fun because you can take risks that you normally wouldn't. You live once, might as well wear some velvet. Don't be afraid to add some garnishes!

blue velvet 2.jpg

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Smart Snacking: What Are Macronutrients & How To Pair Them?

Happy Hump Day Friends!

A new video is live on my YouTube Channel with the lovely Katie from ComplEAT Nutrition.  She helps break down what macronutrients are in a truly relatable fashion and provides some great ideas on how to pair some delicious items together.

Spoiler: I can't get enough of apples and cashew butter now!

In the video, I am wearing Zara Terez leggings, and old Helmut Lang Tee and Michi Sports Bra. Add a side knot to your top for free ;)

xoxo

Kelly

 

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Monday Mantra

So....

Today's post is late. Reason being is that I am getting my a&* kicked in Advanced Yoga Teacher Training. I can barely keep my eyes open these past few days and I may have PTSD when it's all done. If someone says chatturanga to me after training, I may kick them.  I know you are thinking that is very un-yogi of me but that happens when you are sleep deprived. Today's mantra is not a quote by a fancy figure, it's something that I am discovering through this experience: 

-When you set out to learn something new, you may become the subject-

Yes, I am learning amazing stuff in this training. Like really AMAZING stuff and I can't wait to be a better teacher because of it. Ironically, what I am learning the most about is myself. A lot of emotions come up when you place yourself in an unfamiliar or new environment. There is an essence of vulnerability when you seek to learn more. You must first admit to yourself that you don't know it all, something the ego needs to be reminded of daily. Being in an environment with new people and new information can set you spiraling in many directions and I welcome this unraveling. I welcome my brain to absorb new information and for my heart to uncover underlying emotions. I invite you to keep learning, about YOU. While you seek new information to keep your mind, body and spirit youthful, may it dust off the many layers that lead to you. 

Namaste.

PS new arms video is up on YouTube: KOREbyKelly Channel

 

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Be The Life Of The Party

 

ALL LINKS TO THESE ITEMS HAVE BEEN ADDED TO THE END OF THIS POST SO YOU CAN SHOP THIS LOOK, I DECIDED TO MAKE IT EASIER FOR YOU TO SPEND MONEY. YOU ARE VERY WELCOME.

True story, I was SO MUCH FUN in my 20s. Pending my haircut and hair color, some years I was more fun than others. I went through a weird Joan Jett phase (let's never talk about that again) and there is a reason I decided to go blond again, you really do have more fun. I was also highly confused, I thought that bars were dance floors and I made myself at home on top of bars anywhere from NYC to Mykonos. I was the friend who would party with you until the club closed and it took no convincing to get me to go to after hours, I was there. FOMO existed within me before it was even called FOMO. I thought it was just the obnoxious voice in my head. I am pretty certain I will lose my hearing when I get older due to all of the speakers I danced next to (and even on) but it's okay as long as I can still downward dog when I'm 96, I'll consider it ALL WORTH IT!

So what about now. Am I boring? NAH. I will never be boring and neither should you. Yeah okay, I don't dance on top of many bars anymore A. because my boyfriend wants to run for President one day --PAUSE-- I am going to need an Olivia Pope for all this and B. because I don't need to go to a party, I AM the PARTY. HA. That was so fun to write out loud.  What I am saying is that I don't take myself so seriously anymore. Even though I danced around the globe I took my self SO seriously then. Now, I've learned that life is too sweet, too short, too amazing to take it so seriously. I enjoy every single waking moment and every beautiful blessing that I have in my life. If you stop and look around every so often, you'll see that abundance surrounds you. Moral of the story is that you should make life one big fat party but skip the hangover.

One way that I make my life a party is by fashion. I use fashion as an outlet to let my personality live OUT loud. I take risks with fashion. I wear gold and glitter and fur (you could probably hang me off of a FENDI bag the way I look sometimes). Every time I get dressed, I treat it like a daily adventure. Who will I be today, what inspires me? These are strange yet beautiful things I say to my closet in the morning (when it starts talking back, that's when I have really lost it). It is important to wear things that reflect your personality and the many things that you enjoy. If you wear, crocs, no judgement. I just hope you love to cook and maybe you stand in them all day.

So where is this all going you ask? Today I am profiling the amazing inflow Style. The reason I was inspired to share my party story with you is because when I first went on this site to get a vibe for what they carry, I could almost hear good dance music playing in the background. I immediately felt sexy in spite of whatever the heck I was wearing while trolling the site. The best part is that it felt more like an "effortless" sexy sensation versus a "trying too hard" sexy sensation. Leave it to Cali girls to help you feel that way. When I started to think of what "look" I wanted to put together, I was drawn to GOLDSHEEP and I literally said in my head "OMG its like a party on your pants". I wanted to get in a pair of these leggings STAT and go to a fun dance class. They make me a little nervous because I know I am going to sneak a peak in them while in svasana or meditation (btw you should never do that during svasana). I just feel so freaking excited knowing there are pineapples on my pants. THIS IS WHAT I AM TALKING ABOUT! Make your every day moments the party.

So it turns out that GOLDSHEEP means someone who stands out in a crowd. We were all made to stand out. ALL OF US!  (BTW, I am using lots of caps due to excitement and I am practicing for when I am hard of hearing one day). So get a pair of these and rock them like nobody's business.  The designer Keri Wilson is from Laguna Beach (so lucky). She started this brand by taking pics of stuff and then put them on leggings. It is a more thorough process than that but you get it. I LOVE THIS! Talk about another woman making life into a party. She took inspiration from the world literally around her. Fab. I love my pineapples but I had a three day (I am not even kidding) struggle over whether or not I should get the pineapples OR the Gold Lights Leggings. It still kind of keeps me up at night. Another true story is that I also had a massive debate on whether I should go black and white for this post because the Blue Life Fit cropped black and white leggings are also to die for but then who knows if I would have confessed my Joan Jett haircut.

For my top, I went with the Saucha Heidi Crop. It is on sale for the cost of an average boutique fitness class in NYC so get this. If you live anywhere else it is about 2-3 classes for lucky you. I also debated whether I should get the Saucha Ryan Crop  top OR the Frankie top. They are all amazing but I went with the Heidi because I was recently in Germany (just kidding) no but seriously, I went with that one because it has boudoir inspired straps and I will rock this under a million shirts even when I am not going to the gym. 

I topped this look with the Joah Brown Crop That Tee. The name cracks me up. I needed something basic and versatile like this. This will also go to the gym and BEYOND. And, it is crazy soft. I recently shipped back a tee-shirt I ordered from an online store (not this one) because it was polyester. That pissed me off. Who wears a polyester tee? This one you will sleep in. Checkout the GOODHYOUMAN Goal Digger tee. You know a lot of people may break their neck looking at you or give you dirty looks and then feel really bad about it. I find that so funny.

When it comes to finishing touches, the sunnies are DIFF. I know you are sick of me wearing my blue Illestevas all over insta. It's okay, you don't have to say it out loud. I know. I wanted something fun (of course) and I like the black rim with the bling bling gold. I added my SAM puffy vest that my sweet mama bought me for Christmas last year. They have a very similar version if not the same one again this year. Mine also came with a hood that is detachable. I love a vest, it is an amazing layering piece and it has endless possibilities. Even though the French brands may be too cool for school, I made them indulge in a little bit of balloon action with me. I added my Isabel Marant Etoile sneakers and my Saint Laurent bucket bag. Two items that you would need to claw off of me. 

All in all, this site has ridiculous stuff because it is curated by a team of two beautiful sisters inside and out (look at their picture, it is really not normal how beautiful they are)  who have sick taste and know how to live life to the fullest. The below picture is of them in Ibiza. Need I say more? I am totally joining as the 3rd wheel next time. They are rocking Saucha tops and GOLDSHEEP Pants below so we are already on the same page. Their inspiration is bad ass. They played sports and wanted to crush it while not looking like a dude. So funny, I feel like this comes up so much for us ladies lately. Sadly, it goes beyond sports and in some cases into the board room. Femininity should be embraced so I am loving these ladies for exactly that. Their #1 goal is "to help women be the best version of themselves and understand that having the ability to workout and eat heathy is a BLESSING when it is so often looked at as a chore". UMM that won my heart over. It's all about perspective you have a beautiful mind, body and soul, it is truly a blessing to have the privilege of taking care of it. I am girl crushing. 

Links below. Thanks Nat for indulging my balloon request. Love you all. Mean it. xo

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Edgy Post Work-Out Look

HEY! Happy Hump Day. Want to cheer you up with a little fashion flavor on this gorgeous and strangely warm day (in NYC at least).

I have a new video live on YouTube showcasing how I rock a sweet pair of The Upside leggings with my most favorite thing in the world: LEATHER.

Enjoy and Subscribe so you don't miss my cooky self in these videos xo 

Please excuse the very strange face I am making in the opening frame.

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