Loved Week 6 Of My Orange Theory Fitness Challenge

6 weeks and feeling stronger every day! It’s incredible really. I am loving the changes I am feeling in my body. It is almost like an addiction now. I am happy to report that I set out to do 4 Orange Theory workouts a week during this challenge, and so far I haven’t missed one. If anything, I feel like pushing that up to 5 a week. Yes, you can call me a keener if you want to.

In reality though, Orange Theory does become a part of you. When I leave there I always feel like I am on fire. Your so mentally and physically pumped from the whole experience.

The OT marathon has begun, and I started mine on Saturday. We have the month of April to complete it.  I am in competition with no one but myself.

I am looking forward to pushing myself and seeing how far I get with it, Although there is one more reason I may push myself up to 5 workouts a week this month instead of 4, get those miles! I have never actually done a Marathon, so I truly wouldn’t mind completing one.

How about another challenge while I am on this challenge train?! Sounds good to me.

I started Monday off in Justin’s class at the Creekside location with strong determination and feeling on top of the world.

 Once again, that excitement to get back in there was massive. Right now, I am feeling the best changes ever starting. So that being said, there is no way I want to slow down, I want to see where I can go with this.

It was my first time attending one of Justin’s classes, and as it goes at OT, he is another great trainer!

He was continually on top of providing awesome trainer support to everyone. Not only that, he was a great sport at helping me get material for this here blog. We had a nice chat about how much we love OT too, and how true it is that it does become something you would prefer not to live without. 

Trust me, after first getting into OT in Florida 4 years ago, it was super hard for me to leave OT and head back to Spain. A bit heart wrenching really. So clearly I am over the moon to have it back in my life, and not have to leave it any time soon! Anyone who gets into OT feels the same way, so its always great to be amidst like minded people.

Tuesday I played hooky and didn’t go to OT. Kidding. Tuesday I had to work my butt off and couldn’t make it to OT.

Wednesday I was hauling ass to get to Matt’s class at Royal Oak  Traffic and work held me back. When I thought there was no way I was going to make it, I called in, and the awesome ladies at the front desk told me to still come and get in there(in one piece that is), as they were waiting for me. No was not at option. Now, you see just another reason I love OT so much. They love having you just as much as you love being there.

I got there just in the nick of time. I ran in, put my shoes on as fast as I could, ran past the desk while telling all the ladies how awesome they are, and straight in and on to the treadmill, where I continued to run my little heart out. Happy days! That is until my darn shoe laces came untied once again!!

‘Seriously shoe laces, we talked about you coming untied on the treadmill!’

It was a super busy class that day, and Matt was all business. He was making sure he kept everyone on top form. The class flew by because,

A) I was late, and so that meant straight into action.

B) It was super busy! It was a go, go , go kinda afternoon.

I was so happy that I made it in the end – and grateful to OT Royal Oak for being so accommodating. 

Thursday and it was full force once again in Cam’s class at Royal Oak. Actually we were also graced with Trish’s presence assistant coaching too as it was a fast paced and full session.

It was such an awesome class! We paired up with partners, and spent the class doing rotations between the treadmills, rowers and floor workout. I got teamed up with Khrista, and she was an absolutely awesome partner. If your gonna almost kick the bucket, sometimes it’s better to do it with someone else.

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She was tons of fun to pair up with and full of team spirit.

 We both pushed ourselves as hard as we possibly could, and finished with massive smiles and lots of sweat(obviously).  Exactly how you should look after an epic workout.

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You could definitely say that was one tough workout! 

I am growing more and more fond of the rowers. I think in the beginning the rowers were working so many muscles in my body(especially in my shoulders), and seeing as how my body was adapting, rowing was tough for me. Not to mention, some days I am a rock star, and some days my form on them is not on!

This day was no exception, and Cam and Trish kept catching me and correcting my form. It does make a massive difference, and I appreciate every correction I get. That’s the beauty of having trainers there to coach you.

Cam’s classes are always great, and he is full of fab energy that gets people moving.

We had some good laughs trying to get in position for a photo:)

 

In the end we nailed it!

I finished my 6th week off on Saturday in Deanne’s class. It had been awhile since I got to attend one of her classes, she is always happy, and so good at motivating you!  I was tired as heck that day, and was seriously contemplating re-scheduling for Sunday, but when I seen there was a wait list for most of the classes, I figured I best push myself and just go for it. I didn’t want to take the chance of not getting in on Sunday. ‘Come on Petrena, get your ass moving’. Self talk, some of the best conversations I have are with myself.

Once again, those days you really don’t feel like doing it, are always the ones that turn out to be some of the best workouts!

Clearly I found my sweaty zen

Deanne’s class rocked my little Orange Theory going world! I felt ridiculously awesome afterwards, and was pepped right up to tackle the weekend. She rocks! And of course we high fived the heck out of it.  There was just no other way. As per usual. 

I was able to rock all 4 of my work outs last week, and consistently get my splat points in the Orange Zone. Every workout, my body shows me more and more of what it is capable of. Its actually more exciting then anything, where can I take my body and health? The sky is the limit and OT is my ladder.

My measurements have gone down once again after a week of stalling, and it feels great.

Week 5: Chest 36, Waist 36, Hips 40, Arms 10, Legs, 24.5

Week 6: Chest 35, Waist 36, Hips, 39, Arms 9.5, Legs 24

Here are some clips from the week


I can’t even tell you just how much I loved week 6. The best part about this whole 8 week challenge, is that yes it has been challenging, at times, VERY! But its a challenge in an environment that I love, which is what has kept me going. The support you receive at OT, and all the awesome energy, accompanied with the awesome workouts, just keep me going back. If you find something you love doing, then not only is it a challenge, but its also a reward. It’s one of my happy places, that’s for darn sure.

Welcome to week 7!  

 

How To Rock Your First Spin Class

I have always wanted to attend a spin class, and having a long time friend, Michelle, whom I haven’t seen in a few years instructing at Spoke(N)Spin here in Calgary – made for the perfect opportunity for a reunion and a workout.

The studio is quaint, and the space inside is utilized very well. I was amazed at how they fit all the equipment and people in a very comfortable fashion. 


Upon arrival, you get given your special cycling shoes to put on.


They have clips on the bottom, so you can clip onto your bike pedals.

Pretty freaken cool. I was feeling cool anyway. Although, come time to saddle up, I had to fiddle around with mine in the beginning to get them clipped in. 

Let’s do this! 

Of course Michelle being such a fabulous friend, she made me sit in the front row, so I could make an ass out of myself for all to see. Look at the newby!! Kidding.


But, I did try and sit in the back, and she wasn’t having any of it, and did tell me I had to get up there. Fine, fine, I don’t mind being a bit of a spectacle.

Guaranteed I wouldn’t have pushed as hard as I did if I was in the back. So I was actually really thankful she got me up front. Sometimes all you need is that swift kick in the ass.

Show time! The lights go down, the music goes up, and the instructor gets everyone pumped. The music was awesome, and so was Michelle.

There is a knob on the bike that gives and releases tension, and you proceed to go up and down, side to side, following the instructors lead, going for the cycle of a lifetime.

If you close your eyes you can totally pretend you are on some mountain terrain excursion. I myself though, couldn’t close my eyes very much, seeing as how I was still getting used to how to ride this darn bike, I most likely would have ended up seriously injuring myself.

A couple times my shoes un-clipped, and being the classy lady I am, I accidentally said ‘Oops, shit!’ out loud both times. Not to mention, I almost said shit again for saying shit the first time. Man, sometimes you can’t take me anywhere. I had to stay focused to keep portraying the illusion that I knew what I was doing, and also look as though I was naturally rocking it. I am sure once I do it a few more times, I will be rockin it. I have no doubt, practice makes perfect.

My legs were sore as heck already from all my Orange Theory work outs, and pushing through on that bike was not an easy feat. Actually it was tough as nails! To be honest, I never imagined spin class was going to be a hard workout.

Could have fooled me!  And it did, that’s for darn sure.

My legs seriously were just not cooperating as good as they normally would had they hadn’t have been going through my fitness challenge the whole week prior to this class.

I do absolutely love cycling, its one of my favorite sports, and back in Mallorca(Spain), I cycle 30km almost every day. This day however, was like a god send when we moved to the floor. I wasn’t sure how much longer my legs would take it, and I am the type of person that will push until I pretty much collapse. Which would just be fricken embarrassing if you ask me. ‘Oh is the new girl alright?! She doesn’t look alright.’

Excuse me while I peel myself off the floor.

Through it all, no matter how much pain I was feeling, I made sure to maintain a nice sweaty smile. At least I could keep rockin a smile.

They also have straps! I love working out on straps. 

In the end, we got a full body workout, using our own body weight, and finished off with some yoga stretches. Perfect!

Here’s a couple short clips of the sesh.


I broke a massive sweat, and was so stoked to watch my good friend in action. She is a fantastic and motivating instructor, but that goes for her as a person, so I wouldn’t have expected anything less. Oh the joys of checking things off my list in life, and even more so when I enjoyed doing the activity. I can’t wait to attend some more spin classes now and rock the heck out of it.

Spin class, the classy way to get an ass kicking.

 

How I rocked the Calgary Wine Festival Solo

Being a self proclaimed pro at sippin on vino. Obviously I couldn’t pass up the Calgary wine festival. Wine, wine and more wine. Sounds like heaven if you ask me. The picture I had in my mind was quaint tables set up from spectacular vineyards, all for my sampling pleasure. Well that mental picture wasn’t wrong, it was completely right. However, what I wasn’t prepared for was the masses of people, the line ups, the craziness of it all. Oh right, I am back in Calgary, the big busy ass city. A large stretch from the small tranquil(unless there is a festival, which is every other weekend in Spain) island of Mallorca, Spain, where I just moved back from. It was a bit daunting, and I am not into waiting in lines, so I mainly bee-lined for the tables with little to no lineups, unless I scoped something I HAD to try.

Trust me, if it wasn’t as crowded as it was, I would have HAD to have tried everything. Although, in that case, I most likely would have had to have been carried out of there in the end.

I had plans to go with my friends, but then due to a flu wreaking some havoc, everyone pulled out.

With my golden ticket to wine heaven in hand staring me in the eyes like a lost puppy wanting me to take it home – I just couldn’t deny it. How in the heck could I let something like this go to waste?!

Well, I couldn’t. I just couldn’t. Having traveled the globe for the better of the last 10 years, and mainly solo(I mean I crossed the African continent alone), attending a wine fest alone was no freaken problem. Table for 1 please!

I wasn’t actually alone though. I was in my own awesome company. Which just so happens to be some of my fave company on this planet might I add. It was ‘me time‘ at its finest. Some of the best parties of my life have been alone.

So Cinderella called her chariot(Yellow cabs actually),and set off to attend her ball.

So how did I rock it exactly you may be wondering? 

Well, I walked right in with my head held high as if I had every intention of attending it alone from the get go, and smiled with the brightest smile I could find in my pocket.

The best way to rock any situation in life, is to just act freaken natural. Of course some self talk doesn’t hurt. ‘Your awesome Petrena, you got this, just go in there and keep on being  your awesome self.’ It was that damn easy.

The wine festival was set up pretty fantastic, and was very inviting when you entered.

Just follow the red carpet….


What the?! A table full of empty wine glasses? That is not on!
 Here, please allow me help you remedy this situation and fill one of those bad boys up! Being alone also gave me time to mingle with the event staff.

Off I went, wine glass in hand, gracefully into the event.

 

Woah, hello everybody!

I went straight up to one of the first tables I seen that didn’t have a massive line up to get the fresh grape juice flowing into my sad empty glass.  

It’s amazing how a small splash of wine makes a wine glass look so much more appealing. She was a quarter full now!

Funny enough, I kept zoning into the Spanish vineyards…. Call me bias, but Spain is my other home… So clearly I was going to see what lovely vino’s they had on offer from my other home turf.

It’s great when you make friends with the people working the table, because then you can just stand there and keep the samples coming, while making new friends. 

After an hour of this, I was already starting to feel a little tipsy. Who brought the lush out?

I knew I didn’t want to lose my classy composure, so I made sure to guzzle some water in between the samples.

Even though I was rocking this party for 1, when I unexpectedly got the message from my friend that she was kicking that flu bugs ass and coming anyway – I was super stoked! Being such a packed and busy event, it took work to do it alone, so it just made sense to enjoy it with some friends if I had the chance. 

The crowds seem far less overwhelming when you have company. Mind you I remember that time I was in Rio de Janeiro for New Years, lost all my friends, and was rocking it all alone in the middle of 2.5 million people on Copa Cabana beach. Talk about over whelming!

Ahhhh, good friends and good wine. I love life.

I can honestly say I did a very poor job of taking notes of what my favorites were at the wine festival. It was far too busy for that nonsense. At an event of this capacity it was just better for me to team up with my friends and drink as much wine as we could! Ok, well not exactly, I mean once again, I am classy. Lest we forget. That didn’t stop me from enjoying fairly copious amounts though.

The whole event was 3 hours. Funny how the 3 hours flies by! Literally, as soon as the 3 hours is up, they shut her down before the blink of an eye. Well faster then they opened up, that’s for darn sure. Understandably though, as if they didn’t, people would linger, and they wouldn’t be able to prepare for the next session.

To sum it all up, if you ever find yourself in a predicament to attend a wine fest solo, you just friggen go!

Put your best foot forward, act like you planned it that way, sip your little wine lovin’ heart out, all while secretly hoping that your friends will suddenly show up,but knowing you will still have fun if they don’t.

 

The Char Bar Experience

It was a ladies of leisure kind afternoon, and after driving around for sometime trying to make a decision, we ended up choosing to head into the Simmons building in East Village where we got all comfy in Char Bar.

It’s funny how there are so many fabulous restaurants that I want to try in the city, and for some reason when the time came to go out and dine somewhere – my mind went completely blank, and I couldn’t come to any sort of decision what-so-ever, nor could I even think of a name of an establishment that I wanted to visit.

Ahhh, where am I again?! Oh right! Calgary. The mind of a traveler. Although it was a last minute decision to head out, so we really didn’t put a game plan into action before hand. Had we have planned the lunch excursion the evening prior, I would have put some damn good thought into it. However that being said, spur of the moment spontaneity, does lead to some pretty favorable experiences. Not to mention, the ambiance in the Simmons Building is right up my alley. I love the fact that it’s a historic building that’s been restored, I am all about history, vintage, and recycling. The open concept of the Phil & Sebastian cafe, Sidewalk Citizen Bakery, and Char Bar that are inside, is also a winner. Three separate, local businesses, whom are like minded and working in union to create this wonderful culinary experience.

The feel when you walk into the Simmons building is warm, chic and inviting, with plenty of aromas to savor, from the fresh ground coffee, to bakery delights, onto the culinary creations.

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Having spent the better of the last 5 years living on the island of Mallorca in Spain, and having that still as my home for half of every year, I have been quite spoiled with my luxury Mallorcan lifestyle and incredible dining experiences. So I suppose my bar is set pretty high. I myself very much enjoy atmosphere, setting the stage for my experience. Obviously having worked in the hospitality industry for many years, service is quite important to me as well. Natasha and myself got seated at the most perfect quaint little table, nicely tucked away, where we could have our photo shoot and laughs without being amidst loads of people. It was 2 in the afternoon as well, so there was not a massive crowd as it was.


Obviously first thing was first. Get on top of the vino situation. Yes, if you have followed my blog up until now, you know, I am a massive wine lover. Having traveled the world for 10 years and visited many vineyards around the globe, my palette is finely tuned and has a massive appreciation for fine wines.

Today the Rosé was jumping out at me. Mirabeau En Provence from France, was the wine of choice.



I absolutely adore French rosé, particularly rosé from the Provence region – where they are famous for their rosé. Producing it from as early as 600bc, so you could say they have had some practice. This one was a nice combination of wild strawberry, red cherry and raspberry. It went down beautifully.


We had a very fantastic server, Tyson, whom was extremely knowledgeable and very happy to give us any and all recommendations on what to try.


We were interested in just a few small things to share, and so decided on the vegetable ceviche, pistachio and avocado bruschetta, plantain chips, and a small portion of regular fries.


Wait! Before you dig in, let’s not forget to place your napkin.

Being classy makes you cool – and so does sipping on fine wine in a classy establishment.

The vegetable ceviche was super flavorful, and well prepared, I enjoyed every bit of it. The pistachio and avocado bruschetta was made with a different take, but I am a massive avocado lover, so there is no way I won’t enjoy some avo. The chips and fries where exactly that, chips and fries – as you would expect them to be. It was all very tasty.
We were treated to some dessert which was super nice.


In which I washed down with a nice steaming almond milk cappuccino.

Look how much love they put into that cup

 I was trying my darnedest to make the ol’ classic heart with my hands. For some reason though, I couldn’t quite do it. What the heck?! After struggling with it for a bit, I came to the conclusion that my hands just weren’t made to make a damn heart. Well I suppose my real heart is just big enough as it is.

Before our dining experience was concluded, we were also kindly offered to be taken on a tour of the building. To which we obviously accepted.

Tyson continued to wow us with his knowledge of the place.

That table happens to be 103 years old.
The flooring and brick are also completely original.
An original fire door. In case of a fire, the rope would burn and the door would automatically close, keeping all the money safe.
The room upstairs that I would book my private functions in.They do also have ample seating upstairs, as well as a patio in the summer.
Have I mentioned how much I love oysters?!
They take great care in dry-curing their meat.

We were feeling very knowledgeable after that tour. It’s always so nice to see people whom truly enjoy and take pride in their job. Very impressive. What was also impressive is that Tyson proudly hand crafts all his own bow ties. That’s a good stitch if you ask me.

Having had such a fabulous experience for the second time around at Char Bar, you can guarantee that I will be back again in the very near future. 

There is a couple of very satisfied customers.

So, if you happen to be scratching your noggin trying to decide where to take yourself for your next culinary experience in Calgary, then make sure to head down to Char Bar, and make it a memorable culinary delight.