HB Summer Festival on Tour with Two Kick-Ass Rides: #HBonTour

#HBonTour

Ride Details:

FENWAY- Kendrick Lamar & Drake Ride: 8/3/15 at 5:00PM + 6:00PM with ELISE

SOUTHIE- Charlie XCX & Lindsey Sterling Ride: 8/4/15 at 5:45PM with JESS

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Kendrick Lamar and Drake Ride

 Album 'To Pimp a Butterfly' by Kendrick LamarDrake

Kendrick Lamar (@kendricklamar) hasn’t played Boston in a while, but has been active in the festival circuit the past year. He recently headlined at Bonnaroo this year and will be playing the Outside Lands (8/7-8/9) music festival in San Francisco. Drake (@Drake) needs far less introduction has he has become quite famous the past couple years. He’s dropped “If You’re Reading This Its Too Late” early in 2015 and has been on fire all year. Drake has a busy August and September he will be playing Festivals in Canada: OVO Fest (8/2-8/3) and The Squamish Valley Music Festival (8/7-8/9) and then….Music Midtown Festival in GA (9/18-9/19), Landmark Music Festival in DC (9/26), ACL Music Festival in Austin, TX (10/2) and Route 91 Musical Festival in Las Vegas (10/2-10/4). Both Kendrick Lamar and Drake are rap-tastic and we can not wait to see how Elise brings these two together!


Artists similar to Kendrick Lamar: J. Cole, A$AP Rocky, Big Sean, Childish Gambino, Wiz Khalifa

Artists similar to Drake: The Weeknd, Kendrick Lamar, Wiz Khalifa, J. Cole, Kid Cudi, Jay-Z

Reserve your saddle today! Click here

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Charlie XCX and Lindsey Stirling Ride

  Charli XCXLindsey StirlingJ

ess is bringing these two bad ass chicks together for an energy filled ride! You have definitely heard Charli XCX (@charli_xcx) if you have spun at The Handle Bar this Spring/Summer. Charli XCX was featured in Icona Pop’s ginormous hit “I Love It”. She’s about to go on a huge tour with the Bleachers with Jack Antonoff, they actually will be swinging by the House of Blues in Boston 9/14/2015! Lindsey Stirling (@lindseystirling) combines classical music with EDM, hip hop and probably more into just magic. You can catch Lindsey Stirling in a ton of festivals this August including Outside Lands Festival in San Francisco (8/7-8/9), The Billboard Hot 100 Musical Festival (8/22-8/23) in Jones Beach NY and some smaller venues in between.

 

Artists similar to Charlie XCX: Ellie Goulding, Grimes, Icona Pop, Sia, Purity Ring, Lana Del Ray

Artists similar to Lindsey Stirling: Skrillex, David Garrett, Escala, Taylor Davis, Audiomachine

Reserve your saddle today! Click here

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Have suggestions on where to take the #HBonTour? Tweet us @the_handle_bar and we’d love to hear where you would like to go on tour next!

by amy frankenthaler

HB Summer Festival on Tour with ODESZA #HBonTour

HBonTour

Ride Details:
FENWAY Odesza Ride: 7/15/2015 at 5:00PM with SARAH C
SOUTHIE Odesza Ride: 7/17/2015 at 5:45PM with SARAH C

Odesza Album Cover for 'In Return'

Odesza (@odesza) was just recently in town at the House of Blues (HoB), but in case you missed them, they will be back at the HoB on November 14th! If you’d like to hear them sooner grab a saddle this week with Sarah C! Just to get you up to speed on Odesza’s music, some of their more popular songs are: “Say My Name (feat Zyra)”, “Sun Models (feat. Madelyn Grant)” and “All We Need (feat. Shy Girls).” See the Spotify playlist below to for just a small taste of their amazing music and to get you pumped for the rides.

Fun Fact: Odesza was formed in 2012 (only 3 years ago) at Western Washington University in Seattle, WA

Similar Artists:  Flume, Banks, Purity Ring, Glass Animals, Broods, Kygo

Reserve your saddle today! Click here

Have suggestions on where to take the #HBonTour? Liking the tour so far? Let us know! Tweet us @the_handle_bar and we’d love to hear your input and awesome ideas!

Odesza

by amy frankenthaler

6 Week Transformation Challenge – The Big Reveal

Just to recap: Three Handle Bar regulars (Jeff, Sean and Shane) decided to take their fitness goals to the next level and begin a 6-week Transformation Challenge with the Handle Bar. Their main focus was on both weight loss and replacing fat with muscle. Its been 6 weeks, let’s see how they did! #HBtransform

Sean quite impressed with his weight loss journey.

Sean quite impressed with his weight loss journey.

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Jeff's Six Week #HBTransformation. First picture is week 1 and the third is week 6!

Jeff’s Six Week #HBTransformation. First picture is week 1 and the third is week 6!

JEFF:

1) How do you feel?

I feel fantastic! Not going to lie, my legs were really sore for the last week but I think this is the best shape I’ve been in the past few years and overall I feel great.

2) What was your favorite thing about the past 6 weeks? Your least favorite?

My favorite thing about the past 6 weeks was seeing myself progress. I could feel myself getting better as a rider, and seeing/feeling the results was great motivation. My least favorite part was probably getting myself up for the rooster riders but once I got to the studio I was happy I did it!

3) What changes have you made that you plan to stick with?

I plan to stick in the routine of making it to as many of the morning rides a week that I can. I found its a nice way to wake up and kick start the day.

4) How has your riding changed? Do you plan to continue riding as much as you did throughout the challenge?

I think I’ve become a stronger rider for sure. I’ve found myself being able to ride and sprint through parts of songs that I definitely could not at the beginning of the challenge. I hope to make it in at least 3-4 times a week for sure!

5) Any tips to someone looking to reach a goal like yours?

I would say its important to find yourself a routine, and stick to it. Once I got through the first few weeks, it was much easier not only to consistently be in the studio or at the gym, but also on the diet front as well.


Sean's Six Week #HBTransformation. First picture is week 1 and the third is week 6!

Sean’s Six Week #HBTransformation. First picture is week 1 and the third is week 6!

SEAN:

1) How do you feel?

Great! I feel light! Before the challenge I’d feel a bit sluggish, think a perpetual post-thanksgiving lull.

2) What was your favorite thing about the past 6 weeks? Your least favorite?

Favorite think had to be weigh-in day. Seeing the pounds fall off was really a treat! Worst part I would say to be weigh-in day. I would undoubtedly overindulge over the weekend, and would frantically be fasting and working out, sometimes 5 times between Sunday night and Tuesday morning.

3) What changes have you made that you plan to stick with?

Portion control. The first couple weeks eating small would legit make me angry. I’d see what I was getting for meals and be like ‘F@%king crap, this sucks.’ Sure enough though, as the weeks rolled on, I began to be more and more content eating small and eating clean.

4) How has your riding changed? Do you plan to continue riding as much as you did throughout the challenge?

My riding has gotten much better. Long stints out of the saddle had been really difficult for me in the past, now I feel a level of strength with which I can charge through those hard parts. With the HB Summer Share I can imagine i’ll try to get in there at least 4 days a week, maybe more!

5) Any tips to someone looking to reach a goal like yours?

COMMIT! Just do it! It will suck at first, you’ll be tired, you’ll be hungry, but I’d urge you to be strong and wait it out. Nothing felt better than watching the weight fall off week after week.


Shane's Six Week #HBTransformation. First picture is week 1 and the third is week 6!

Shane’s Six Week #HBTransformation. First picture is week 1 and the third is week 6!

1) How do you feel?

I feel great! I feel like I can move mountains now! I have more energy overall and a definite recognizable pep in my step!

2) What was your favorite thing about the past 6 weeks? Your least favorite?

There are so many positives and not a whole heck of a lot of negatives. Waking up in the early morning hours was actually a godsend. I’ve been starting my day HOURS earlier than I used to and because of that I’ve become a more productive person overall. That has to be my favorite thing. The obvious benefits of exercising are perks too: reinforcing positive vibes both mentally and physically, being more aerodynamic when I’m cutting and slashing towards the basketball hoop for an easy 2, and getting to connect and bond with fellow HB riders are strong candidates for my favorite thing throughout this challenge

3) What changes have you made that you plan to stick with?

Starting the day off right. I used to either consume half my daily caloric intake in breakfast alone or skip the meal altogether, both of which have disastrous consequences.

I’m more conscious about what I decide to put in my mouth. I’m no longer a vacuum cleaner, maybe more like a hand held Dirt Devil.

4) How has your riding changed? Do you plan to continue riding as much as you did throughout the challenge?

Prior to the challenge I rode rather sparingly. I’m hooked now so you’ll be sure to see me locked into the pedals more often. My riding has changed because I’m definitely more in sync with the music and it makes for a more pleasurable ride. Nothing is worse then being out in 3 only to look around and see everyone else is in the saddle doing tricep presses. Did I just black out?

5) Any tips to someone looking to reach a goal like yours?

You can do it! And even after 6 weeks of consistently riding I don’t feel burnt out in the slightest, so get after it! Also, take a bunch of different classes. Spinning is not universal. Instructors bring their own unique flare to the platform and it’s been fun switching up which instructor I wanted to ride with. I suggest to give everyone a shot and it’ll definitely keep you coming back for more.


What a fantastic job guys! All three of you have shown such dedication and hard work, a great example for us all. We hope you continue your journey and to see you jamming out in the HB saddle soon!

Who raised the bar in May? Nancy Drinan!

As an active member of our #HBFam, Nancy inspires so many riders with your kindness, passion for riding and her smile. She truly epitomizes the Handle Bar spirit, community and is a staple in the Southie studio. Everyday (yes everyday!), Nancy comes in with such a brilliant smile and great attitude, you just know she Nancy is truly happy to be in the studio. We are just so happy to award you Rider of the Month! Congrats Nancy!

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Nancy in her element at the Handle Bar in South Boston.

1. Everyone has their own unique fitness journey. What has your journey been like with spinning?

I began spinning about 15 years ago when it was still are relatively new fitness activity.  Actually, I was not much attracted to it, but I was “forced” into the studio because we had a lost a few our aerobics teachers at the same facility and I was tired of dealing with cancellations.  The first time I sat in the saddle, I knew it was for me.  I never looked back and have been spinning nearly every day since then.

2. Tell us an unknown fact about yourself.

Though I have lived in South Boston for more years than some of our Handlebar riders have been alive (22 years), I was actually born and raised on the South Shore.  I’ve been in Southie for so long though, I am almost considered a “native.” Believe me, this is high praise!

3. What did you do for fitness prior to joining the studio? Besides cycling, what other activities do you do to keep fit?

Prior to joining the studio, I was spinning at my local community center.  Now I tell my friends, “I am going down to the Handlebar to do the real spin class!” 🙂  Actually, I am a bit of a fitness “nut.”  I am blessed to enjoy just about everything.  I still do a lot of cross-training  at my local community center (Curley Recreation Center on Day Blvd.).  I do step aerobics, kick-boxing, and interval training with weights. I love it all!

4. What other communities are you a part of in Boston? Social groups, volunteering, athletics, hobbies?

I am so busy with my job as a medical editor/science writer for Children’s Hospital that I don’t volunteer as much as I should.  I am not much of a “joiner,” but I am very involved in my parish, Gate of Heaven in Southie, and I am a daily communicant at St. Anthony’s Shrine at Downtown Crossing.  You know, I make a mad dash for the train after the 6 AM spin class just so I can must make the 7 AM mass!  I tell everyone one that spin and daily mass are my “bookends” for a balanced, joyful life.  Take care of body, mind and soul!

5. What goals has The Handle Bar helped you achieve?

Well, the instruction is at such a high level–far greater than what I was accustomed to–that I have become stronger, fitter, and more familiar with the top tunes!  I am a bit of a dunce when it comes to “pop culture” so you young people educate me daily. Thank you!

6. What’s your favorite way to end a long week?

The 5:45 PM spin class with Sarah C. at the Handlebar, of course, followed by my fish dinner and a glass of Chardonnay.

7. What words do you live by?

“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you (Matthew 7:12)”

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Nancy has even made an appearance on our HBSnapchat @handlebarsnap; She is the best! 

#HBSummerShare 2015: Commit to a Summer Worth Sharing

by amy frankenthaler

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Have you signed up for #HBSummershare yet? If Not Now? When? #HBSummerShare starts June 1st, you have only a couple more days to take advantage of this fantastic deal: $400 for 10 weeks of UNLIMITED riding. How will you #raisethebar this summer?

We were able to reach out to four of our awesome HBriders that both won #HBSummerShare last summer Alisun Kovach, Dayna Isley, Becky Anzalone and Nicole Castillo. Thanks again ladies for sharing your experiences with us, we love our #HBFam! We had them reflect on their experience last summer with HBSummerShare:

 

1)What inspired you to sign up for #HBSummerShare last summer?

Becky Anzalone: I signed up #HBSummerShare last summer as a way to hold me accountable for my workout routine. I find it hard in the summer months to keep up with a consistent routine with the lure of outdoor patio drinking.  I already found myself spinning a few nights a week so it made sense (as well as the cost-savings of being able to have an unlimited pass to spin classes).

Nicole Castillo:I was training for a half-marathon, and I wanted to step up my game. Spinning made a huge difference, because I am able to achieve a much harder cardio doing it than running. Also, the competition was just so fun! And pretty much I’ll do anything for free swag. 🙂

Alisun Kovach: I never participated in any kind of challenge before, I thought the #HBSummerShare sounded really fun, and seemed like a great way to prioritize working out during the summer. Plus the potential to win a free month of unlimited riding and a free shirt had me sold!

Dayna Isley: I ran my first half marathon in May last year. Running, as it turns out, is not my favorite. I needed a change, and #HBSummerShare seemed like a good challenge.

2)Describe your experience. What was the best part about #HBSummerShare last year?

Becky Anzalone:I am so glad I participated last year! One of my good friends also did it with me, so we could both motivate each other and use it as an excuse to see each other more often.  I also loved having the board up on display – talk about accountability! It was also a great way to see how you were stacking up versus other riders. The competitive element was really motivating! I also really enjoyed the social media aspect and tagging my instagram pics and tweets with the #HBsummershare.  It’s a great way to stay connected with other HB riders/instructors.

Nicole Castillo: It was incredible! A friend (Valerie Abeille) and I did it — she was at Fenway and I was at Southie and we could watch each others’ progress on the leaderboard. It was hard at times to stick with it because I would “fall behind” when I went on vacation. But, knowing I had a goal to reach, got me to hit spin at times when I normally would just skip it… like before I got on the airplane for a summer vacation, or early in the morning after a late night out.

Alisun Kovach: Participating in the #HBSummerShare was awesome. Since I was at the studio so much, I got to meet a lot of new people and was able to get to know the girls who work there too (love them all!). I also loved that you got points not only for going to classes, but also for posting on instagram (truth be told, I didn’t have an insta account until the challenge started, and now I can’t get enough of it). It was fun walking around and finding random things that would remind you of the HB, and therefore remind you to get your butt to class, and like I said, prioritize working out, even when all you really wanted to do was lay at the beach all day.

Dayna Isley: I had been spinning some at the Handle Bar in Southie since it opened, but #HBSummerShare really kicked things up. I learned that I could spin a lot–even in the morning!–and really love it.  By the end of summer, I could even make it through both sets of arms in Elise’s hour of power Saturday classes. I felt stronger and had fun in the process.

3) Are you signed up for #HBSummerShare this summer? If so, what are you looking forward to most?

Becky Anzalone: I signed up for my second #HBsummershare for this summer and I can’t wait until it starts.  I am excited to have an unlimited pass to ride all summer long and stay motivated by all the amazing riders at the Handle Bar  (I have a couple friends who I plan on riding with this summer as well!). I’ve tried other spin studios over the years across the city, but the sense of community at Handle Bar, is part of what keeps me coming back.  #HBSummerShare is a prime example of why I love spinning at the Handle Bar.

Nicole Castillo: I’m not… because I have the VIP membership… or I totally would! I am still going to hashtag and post. The Handlebar ladies of twitter are already in full force. I’m excited to join them. I’m at @niccastillo1017 I’m all about the social media engagement. Last year, I did a top 10 things I learned from #HBSummerShare. Let’s see what I come up with this year. 🙂

Alisun Kovach: I haven’t decided if I’m singing up yet, but I would really like to win a beach towel, so I probably will!

Dayna Isley: I signed up for #HBSummerShare again because it was so motivating and fun last year. Because I like spin, I know I’ll stick with it; and if I ever feel like slacking, the challenge will keep me motivated. It’s also a great deal when you break it down. Bring on June 1!

An Instagram posted by Becky last summer for #HBSummerShare. A great example of the hashtag social media challenge in action.

An Instagram posted by Becky last summer for #HBSummerShare. A great example of the hashtag social media challenge in action.


If you still aren’t convinced, we’ve put together a list of the top reasons to participate in #HBSummerShare.

Top Five Reasons to Join #HBSummerShare 2015:

  1. Stay in Shape and Motivated all Summer long with a Steal of a Deal                       Each studio will track those participating in the riding competition. It’s officially bikini season, we have to keep that beach body we worked so hard to get! Can’t give up now, keep that beach body all summer long with #HBSummerShare. Ten weeks of unlimited riding for just $400 lets you stay in shape and save for those amazing summer adventures.
  2. #HBFam + #HBCommunity Support (Forever and Always <3)                                Join the #HBFam this summer not only in the saddle, but whereever your summer adventures take you! Simply, by tagging #HBSummerShare in a Facebook post, Instagram or tweet, your #HBFam will be right there with you. We, also, encourage you to make some new #HBSummerShare 2015 friends and meet up both on AND off the saddle. This is strongly encouraged in any and all challenges this summer..after all…“You CAN Spin With Us” 🙂
  3. Adjusted Summer Schedule- Just for YOU                                                         We know you’re busy, its summer, its warm…you want to be on the beach. We have tailored our weekend schedules to accommodate just that. Please take a look at your home studio’s schedules because weekend times have been added and changed for the summer effective this weekend. All the more reason to squeeze in a ride or two with your unlimited #HBSummerShare package.
  4. Prizes (Who doesn’t like prizes?)                                                                          We like prizes! If you participate in the riding competition and ride 45 times in 10 weeks…that’s just 4-5 times per week…you win a beautiful #HBSummerShare 2015 beach towel. Think of all those at the beach or pool envious of that gorgeous towel you EARNED. The top four rides will win FURTHER unlimited riding packages.                                                                              If you participate in the hashtag/social media competition, you have a chance to win a prize EVERY week of the competition. Each week, our favorite hashtagged post will be announced and the winner will receive a gift from 1 of our favorite local spots. The sponsor and prize will be announced at the start of each week, and to get you started  – here’s what we have for our first 4 weeks of the competition:

    Week 1 Prize: Handle Bar embroidered Backpack or duffle (of your choice)

    Week 2 Prize: A tasty gift from a tasty place! $50 to Tasty Burger

    Week 3 Prize: Feeling feisty? Post to win $50 to Loco Taqueria and Oyster Bar in Southie!

    Week 4 Prize:  A Perky Gift from our new Fenway neighbor! Pavement Coffee $50 gift card

                                     More prizes to be released next week!

  5. Competition                                                                                                                                             Challenge your friends, family, neighbors, mailman, new and old HB friends and more importantly YOURSELF to ride more, ride stronger, ride proud. Share the link to this blog with anyone you want to see sitting on that saddle next to you.                                                                                                                           This is your summer, your time to shine, to kick ass, so take charge! The summer of you is waiting…so grab a #HBSummershare package and watch yourself transform in just 10 weeks. The challenge starts June 1st, so act fast.

Click here to purchase your #HBSummerShare 2015 purchase.

Once the #HBSummerShare kicks off on June 1st, we’ll be following your progress riding AND sharing your Instagrams/tweets to keep you motivated and on track all summer long. Be sure to tag #HBSummerShare in your posts!

Tweet at us when and why you chose to sign up for #HBSummerShare to @The_Handle_Bar for twitter AND instagram!  Doing the #HBSummerShare for the second year in a row? We want to hear from you too, share your experiences just like Alisun, Dayna, Becky and Nicole. We may just share some on and before the #HBSummerShare kickoff June 1st.

As always, see you in the saddle!

The new LEADERBOOK for #HBSummerShare2015! Keep track of your progress and competition!

The new LEADERBOOK for #HBSummerShare 2015! Keep track of your progress and competition!

“What’s in Your Bag?” – A Handle Bar Exclusive

by amy frankenthaler

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Sarah C is just SHOCKED at whats in her bag!

Have you seen our new merchandise? We just got in, beautiful Herschel Supply (@herschelsupply) bags in gorgeous spring colors! Our instructors and staff could not keep their hands off them!! Four of our awesome Handle Bar instructors were asked the question “What’s in your bag?”, so we had them empty out their bags and show us! See below for their creative responses!


Sarah C (@sarahkcopp)0IGEyWxiWdOf54NhaK5cKziaraZgd10jzwPYO62NOD8prRMFhITgh22lhg8qZpSql7JHLPMfWo_staipngR5j-qi5DI=s2048

Here we go gang, behold, the contents of my bag. Some items of note:

  1. A Handle Bar sticky memo: Thanks to the lovely desk staff, I always know exactly where my new riders are sitting, all written on this HB sticky note. I got my eyes on you, newbs. 🙂
  2. Almay lip color: A little trick I learned from instructor Eve. Gotta look good for a room full of riders!
  3. Shure mic belt: So I can make “shure” that the mic pack stays safe and secure for class (See what I did there?).
  4. Extra sports bra and Handle Bar tank: I’m always on the go, so I have to carry extra (ahem, dry) workout gear for post class activities. (Brunch anyone?)
  5. Snacks: I’ve become that person who seriously NEVER travels without a snack. You can always count on me to have something to munch on.
  6. The Fifth Watches timepiece: My favorite everyday watch. This bad boy can’t hang in a spin class, he’s got to stay safe in my bag.
  7. Frends Layla headphones: I legit can’t go anywhere without these. They connect me to my music! And they are so fun to wear. I can’t even count how many times strangers have asked me what I’m listening to because I bop and dance around, thinking I’m in my own little world with these on.
  8. The Handle Bar Herschel bag in army green: Because I need something stylish, durable and fun to carry all my things!

Jenn Q (@jmquinlan90)

The question isn’t really what is in my bag, it is what is NOT in my bag!  I basically live out of a bag so I always have an array of essentials to get me from class to work and home with no mishaps!  I am always on the go and carrying a ton of things, so the HB backpack is the perfect way to free up my hands (so I can hold onto that coffee cup), and keep all my things in one place as I’m running out the door.  In order to get to class I need to have my car keys and wallet…cant get far without those, but in terms of spinning items, I  have the necessities, such as my shoes, my mic belt, my folder of playlists, plenty of pens for last minute choreography corrections, a pair of headphones to help me make sure I know those songs inside and out, ALWAYS a water bottle, and of course, my cell phone!  Can’t get through life or class without that. 

Given that I teach solely morning classes, there are lots of little things that I need to make sure i have to allow for a quick clean up after class before hitting the 9-5! (I know my roosters can relate touBGaj7Yp_35iTipBYkTME7aZFEGhO8YOKzPT87Dq52XLAN67ToHk1IFClX6zGQwOvgI0_U5OAvJeCOvrLtRZm4Oy3EA=s2048 that)  Facial wipes and moisturizer are essentials.  I also make sure I always have deodorant, perfume, baby powder and a hair brush to make my hair presentable, and Aquaphor.  Although a little tube, that stuff is my miracle worker.  From chap stick, to eye make up remover and a dry skin reliever that magic potion does it all, and I literally do not leave the house without it in at least one of my bags!

I keep a bag inside my bag (Yes, i have a couple of those) to put all my sweaty clothes in after class, and one that holds my outfit I will be changing into after class.  Teaching in the morning is all about trial and error, and believe me, I have learned a couple lessons the hard way. Because of that, I always keep at least 1 pair of spare socks in my bag.  Especially now that the weather is turning around and we will start wearing flip flops to the studio, I never know when myself, or a rider may need a pair of socks, and luckily I can come to the rescue when it happens.

The last couple random things I throw in that bag are a headband and hand sanitizer.  Sometimes the hair just doesn’t cooperate, and when that is the case, throwing on a headbands makes everything better.  Finally, the hand sanitizer.  Fun fact–I’m kinda a germaphobe.  My bedside table, my car, my desk at work, my purse, my gym bag…no matter where you look, you will notice I always have a little bottle of hand sanitizer.  At this point it has become more of a mental habit i think, but I always need a bottle in arms reach–and thank god for the bottle at the front desk of both HB locations, I use it every single morning before I walk out the door.

So yes, I put my entire life into that mighty HB backpack, and now that you know what is in it, if you ever forget anything, you know where to find me!


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Candice P (@CandicePeak) and pup Scooter!

I am constantly on the go, so I have many essentials that you would consistently find in my bag. The bigger the bag, the better for me! I am loving the new Herschel duffel because it has the long strap, just in case I need to have my hands free while chasing my dog Scooter around and it has the short straps as well! It’s not only an awesome gym bag, but will be great for a long weekends away too. Here is what you will find in my bag on a day to day basis:

Lots of thick headbands—My hair is ridiculously long and a but unruly when working out so the “At The Beach” headbands and the Lululemon bang buster headband perfectly tames my lion’s mane.

Dry Shampoo-After I teach a double on Tuesday mornings, I have about 30 min to make the switch into my corporate attire and doing a full wash of my hair usually isn’t an option. I swear by Dove dry shampoo and would recommend it to anyone who needs to skip a wash a few times a week.

Eos lip balm/ Burts Bees tinted lip balm— I’m a lip balm addict. Eos is great for before a run or before I teach and I love the Burts Bees tinted lip balm for work.

iPad mini-I make all my playlists on my trusty iPad and its tiny so I can pop into any purse. I also use it for checking email quickly and for catching up on my reading with the Kindle app.

YU17PX7u36UQ4uyu4Ae-u7rcnbldVat7brxXnLafic-R0MHFDc3uG8UeNwpkwdhL8UBrvXhZCX23mlJqoTEYVAd14zw=s2048Frends headphones-Sarah C (hey!!) actually was my inspiration for getting these! I got them as a Christmas present from my boyfriend, when I wouldn’t stop talking about how awesome they are and kept sending links to him (subtle hints!). They sound great and are so unique looking. I get tons of compliments on them.

Running sneakers-I’m currently training for my 8th half marathon in May and I will be running the NYC Marathon for the second time in November. New Balance 1400s sneakers are my favorite and the pair pictured here are also glow in the dark!

Hand wraps—I love going to Box FIIT classes at The Club in Fort Point. Sometimes it’s nice to relieve some stress by throwing on some boxing gloves and hitting a bag as hard as you can. (Watch out!!)

Sunglasses-I feel incomplete if I accidentally leave my sunglasses at home… They are in my bag year-round and they double as a great headband indoors! I have about three pairs scattered about in different bags.

Water/Kind Bar—I constantly have water with me. With how active I am, it’s important for me to stay hydrated throughout the day. Kind Bars are an absolute lifeline for me. I’m known to get a little hangry so I usually have one on hand in case of emergency.


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Sarah M (@sar_maguire) and baby Liam!

We’ll start with the baby stuff. As everyone knows we welcomed our first baby into the world at the very end of 2014. I have quickly learned to never leave home without the following: 1. extra diapers 2. wipes 3. pacifier 4. burp cloth 5. hand sanitizer. No one likes a screaming baby with a dirty diaper!

My normal everyday essentials include my wallet, keys to my car, my Ray-Bans and my glasses because I am blind but have a fear of contacts. I also can’t live without good ol’ regular chap stick and Tums.

As for my work essentials…I am a real estate broker and I am always on the go. I have back to back showings throughout the city all day and my iPad serves as a virtual listinHVh4m2UxbF5r5ziTMMpshnjzgLDVcFLqXI6a03sXla49J5A8CYMlyNInj8aoc4EiLpEButa9ZVjiLr2AailnO6v9QwU=s2048g sheet and allows me to take notes for my clients. I can also look up other homes for sale in the area on the fly. Even though I rely heavily on my phone and iPad for business, I would not be able to function without my actual weekly planner. I do not use the calendar features on my phone or iPad, instead I write everything down in my planner and I always carry a stack of business cards. I almost always have a folder full of listing sheets, comps, client info, notes and you may even find a Handle Bar class plan in there as well!

My water bottle, spin shoes and head band come everywhere with me. You never know when you’re going to be able to pop in and take a class. Also, if I don’t always keep those things on me I am more likely to forget them when it’s time to teach!


What do you have in your bag? Tweet us at @The_Handle_Bar and tell us! Carry something in common with an instructor, tweet at them!

When posting don’t forget the hashtags: #whatsinmybag #inmybag #HBexclusive!

A city, a studio, a community

By Falon Sweeney

There are two things in this world I enjoy more than anything else: traveling and fitness. However, the ease with which the two go together is pretty variable from place to place. Some places (mostly in the US), it’s super easy to fit in your daily sweat; and others, it can be a bit more difficult—like when I tried to go running in Ecuador and got chased by a few vicious dogs. That made me sweat. But no matter what, I try my best to stay active and explore how others incorporate fitness or just general activity into their daily lives.

In the past year I’ve had the chance to explore the fitness scepicstitchnes in Boston, Los Angeles, and Washington D.C. I can say with confidence—no matter how fit Forbes ranks us—that Boston is the most “fit” for fitness. The charisma of this city makes it so easy to be active whether you love it or you hate it. We can walk almost everywhere and have some of the most scenic running and cycling routes. We are the home of the most popular marathon in the country. But most of all, we have the best sense of community I’ve yet to come across. We are #BostonStrong and we have been for much longer than a mere four months.

Outside of New England, Bostonians have a reputation of being abrasive and unwelcoming—something about our harsh accents and great driving skills. But just like one can’t actually park his car in Harvard yard, one can’t condemn our sense of community, either. We’ve got each other’s back no matter in time of tragedy or just daily life.

Boston’s group exercise scene is a growing community within a community. It’s an awesome mix of inspiration, support, and sweat. At The Handle Bar we are constantly building our community and welcoming riders old and new to come join our party. Bring a friend, or two, or five and see what we’re all about. Whether you come for one of our Glo-cycle class (August 29!) or a casual ride during your lunch break, we can guarantee you’ll have a blast—and manage to get a great workout in.

See you in the saddle–we’ve got your back!

Who raised the bar in July?

Beatrice Rossa!

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We are so excited to recognize Beatrice’s hard work and commitment to her body, herself, and her fitness goals. When The Handle Bar opened in her building, Beatrice saw a chance to make the changes in her lifestyle she had been wanting to make for years. An on-again, off-again group fitness participant, Beatrice knew that The Handle Bar could be all that she needed to finally get motivated–and stay motivated. Since her first class at The Handle Bar, Beatrice has lost over 10 pounds, but most importantly has regained the self-confidence and energy she had as a 20-something. Congrats, Beatrice! You–and all of our riders who are achieving their fitness goals–are what keep our wheels spinning.

So, Beatrice…

Everyone has their own unique fitness journey. What has your experience/journey been like with spinning?

Before the Handle Bar I was at my wit’s end with my increasing weight and lack of motivation to do anything about it. I had experience taking classes in the past and knew that they really helped me get fit and motivated. When I heard that the Handle Bar was opening in my neighborhood I was so excited because I knew it was exactly what I needed.

How do you fit fitness into your everyday life?

Before the Handle Bar, work took over my life and I had time for little else. But I knew that had to change if I was going to commit to getting healthy. In the beginning I tried to take the 6am classes to make it fit with my work schedule. But I am not a morning person at all and after the 3rd day in a row I realized I couldn’t keep it up. I was relieved to see that the Handle Bar has 7pm classes, which is perfect for me. I plan out my week in advance, register for classes online, and commit to leaving work in time to make it. It took about a month of figuring out what schedule works best for me, but I am proud to say that I am at the Handle bar 4-6 days a week. So glad I bought the 40 class package, totally worth it!!!

What goals has The Handle Bar helped you achieve?

I feel more energized, fitter, self-confident, and I lost 10 pounds!

What’s your favorite way to retox after a long week?

I have a weakness for chocolate, so I indulge once or twice a week now, rather than everyday like I used to. Good thing I know I can still give in a little and work it off at the Handle Bar 🙂

Do you have a favorite class at The Handle Bar?

My preference is the 1 hour classes on the weekends. I know that I will burn off the most calories and can still have time to enjoy my weekends.

What is your favorite music to spin to?

One of my favorite things about The Handle Bar is the awesome music and moving to the beat. I kinda feel like I’m in a club with the dim blue lights and the occasional DJ JI love to move to anything by Ke$ha or Britney.

What are your thoughts on using bike shoes? Had you ever used them prior to riding with us at The Handle Bar?

At first I thought it was a weird idea, kinda like bowling shoes. But once I tried it at the Handle Bar, I totally got it. The ride was smoother and my sense of security while standing on the pedals was so much better.  I went online and ordered myself a pair pronto.

What motivates you?

Believe it or not, it’s actually being an inspiration to others. I love telling people about how excited I am about the Handle Bar and how committed I’ve been about sticking to a schedule. There is nothing better than seeing that you can help motivate others with your actions to change their lives.

What words do you live by?

Life’s too short, so make the best of it!

Who raised the bar in June?

Marcus Springer!

At The Handle Bar, we hope to provide our riders with a place to achieve their fitness goals and constantly improve by raising the bar higher. For some, raising the bar might mean just showing up to class two times in the same week, and for others it could mean reaching weight loss or other fitness goals. No matter how high you set the bar for yourself, we hope that each ride makes you stronger, both physically and mentally. To honor our riders’ commitment to improvement, we choose one rider every month who has made some serious progress towards achieving whatever goals he or she has been working towards, whether goal setting was a conscious choice or it just “happened”.
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This month, (for the first time ever!) we are proud to announce that rider Marcus Springer has really raised the bar! Marcus is totally new to spinning and has hit the ground running. In just about a month, he has lost ten pounds and is well on his way to achieving his ultimate fitness and weight loss goals. Did we mention that Marcus has two young boys–one of whom, a newborn–and runs two companies. Talk about staying focused on fitness while making time for family and other responsibilities. We are so excited for Marcus and are happy to be a part of his fitness journey. Congrats, Marcus!

So, Marcus…

How did your journey with indoor cycling begin?

I started spinning when The Handle Bar opened. I had never done it before and was curious.  I found it pretty hard at first but after the fifth time I was able to keep up with the resistance etc. Now I love it. I am addicted and getting noticeably stronger.

How have you been able to juggle accomplishing your fitness goals and spending time with family (including the new baby!)?
I only go first thing in the morning.  I take the 6 and 6:15am classes during the week and the 8:30 class on Saturday and the take Sunday off.  That schedule works well for all concerned…The newborn is basically up every three hours so I just have to roll with it. :). I try to go six times a week. I have missed a couple of times but am able to keep to that schedule pretty well.

[How] has The Handle Bar helped you in accomplishing your goals?

I was rapidly becoming an overweight slug so I was looking for an activity that I could do in the morning that was a group activity in order to get fit and lose weight.  The gym doesn’t really work that way and spinning is ideal.  Since I started I have lost 10 pounds of my goal to get a 1 in front of my weight for the first time in 15 years…20 more to go… Goal is to get to 195 lbs by Thanksgiving.

Do you have a favorite/hardest class at The Handle Bar?
So far I like all the classes. Elise, Tim and Meg are all really good. Those are the ones that stand out in my mind.
What is your favorite music to Spin to? 
I don’t really have a favorite. Whatever they play I kind of ride in to the music.  It is really a lot of fun. The 45 minutes passes by pretty quickly now.
What are your thoughts on using bike shoes?
Bike shoes are critical to spinning in my mind as you have to pull the pedal up as well as push it down which you wouldn’t be able to do without bike shoes.
 
“I think The Handle Bar is a great addition to the Macallen building complex.  It makes it so easy for me to achieve my goals of getting fit and weight loss.  I generally go to the gym after spinning to do free weights for a half hour. After all that I can be back in my apartment by 7:30 to make breakfast for the boys and get the day going.  I have two companies of my own that I run in addition to the two boys. In order to do that you absolutely have to be fit or you’re screwed.  The Handle Bar is definitely the answer for me!”
See you in the saddle, Marcus!

Friends who sweat together stay fit together, longer

So you’ve decided to workout on a regular basis. And you mean it this time. No excuses, no postponing until tomorrow. Your journey starts today. That’s great news. However, as many of us have experienced, it is so much easier said than done. For some, a week of working out consistently can snowball into months of regular exercise and healthy eating habits. But for others—a.k.a., most of us—one week of consistency equals three more weeks of sporadic exercise, one too many “cheat” meals, and the inevitable fall from the bandwagon. This cycle continues, leaving us wondering how some people manage to hang on and make it past the proverbial hump, incorporating exercise and proper nutrition as part of their lifestyle—for life. It’s a puzzling sequence, but if you can find a motivational tool (aside from your unbending willpower, of course) from the start, you’ll be twice as likely to stick with it for the long run—even through those bitter Boston winters.

 There are endless ways to get motivated without even flexing your willpower muscles. Honestly, a few of my favorite motivators come from late-night Pintrest browsing. You could create a “fit-spiration” bulletin board, invest in some new kicks to show off at the gym (or maybe a pair of bike shoes?!), or buy a pack of spin classes or a gym membership with an expiration date so that you’ll be sure not to waste your money. But just like money can’t buy happiness, it can’t always buy motivation, either.

The best motivation I’ve yet to find comes from friends—a few of whom I barely knew before becoming a fitness fanatic, and others who have been by my side for years. Whether you introduce yourself to a fellow rider during class or drag your couch-potato roommate to sweat with you, I can almost guarantee it will be harder for either of you to lose your motivation when you don’t go it alone, for a few reasons:

Accountability—It’s rude to cancel last minute, but we always seem to cancel on ourselves. When you have a date to sweat with yourself and someone else, you’ll be way less likely to cancel, especially when that fit image you’ve been chasing is on the line. 

You’ll have more fun—If you’re making fitness an integral part of your lifestyle, you have to make it fun, or else you’ll eventually get bored. #Workhard with a friend and you can #playhard later!

 Spend time with the friend who’s always M.I.A.—We all have those friends whom we never see because they are just too busy. But chances are, if they’re into fitness, they won’t skip a workout. So sweat together a few times a week and your long lost friend could soon be your new bestie.

Celebrate your successes and sweat away your failures—With a few setbacks, you’ve kicked those stubborn ten pounds! Congrats! Now go celebrate with your fitness buddy—after you have a kickass workout together, of course : )

 

At The Handle Bar, we never sweat alone. That’s why we have an ongoing promotion that allows you to bring a “date” that has never ridden with us for free!

See you—and your friends—in the saddle!