swēt ride: Everything you need to know about Del Ray’s only indoor cycling studio

swēt ride: Everything you need to know about Del Ray’s only indoor cycling studio

We’re moving to Alexandria’s adorable Del Ray neighborhood the same time as its first indoor cycling studio. It must be fate.swetridebikes

Remember the old HomeMade Pizza Co. on Mount Vernon Avenue? The cool folks at Barre Tech decided to turn it into a cycling studio! It officially opens on Saturday, November 15 (you can register for classes beginning Wednesday morning), but I was able to get a sneak peek of the studio and take a class taught by co-owner Kat.

The workout lasted around 45 minutes (full of hills, sprints, and good jams), after which we were treated to some bubbly and yummy treats.

Here’s a rswetridecupcakesundown of what you need to know:

  • $24 per ride, with discounts for multi-ride packages.
  • Cycling shoes are a must. If you don’t own them, you can borrow a pair for no added cost.
  • The studio is cozy. There are a few cubbies to put your stuff, one bathroom, and 15 bikes.
  • They have newest Schwinn bikes with awesome computers that track your cadence (RPMs), calories, time, and other fun stats. You can even sync it with your heart rate monitor (bonus: swēt ride will have heart rate monitors for riders to borrow!). Eventually, these stats will sync with your account online so you can track your progress.
  • Their teaching method focuses on RPM, which is my FAVORITE because it really pushes you to your limit and you get the best workout.
  • The class ends with a cold, eucalyptus-scented towel!

Just another reason to get excited about our big move!




#killinit. it’s a thing

While Kristine has been dominating AM workouts and holding down the for in our nation’s capital, I have been bouncing around various corners of the country. Two weeks ago my dear friend got married to her perfect match in their hometown of Chicago. They had a sword arch as they exited the gorgeous Ukrainian church, a killer band, delicious food and hunky Marine and Navy officers in uniform joining the in the festivities (the groom is a Marine) . It was a phenomenal weekend full of my closest friends, lots of fun (and lots of food and beverages).

In the few days following my return from Chicago, before I left for SXSW in Austin, I managed to get in some long runs, double spin classes and a little yoga. A short 3 and half days to reset my mind and body before leaving for a week long adventure in the southwest. Despite being there for work, my friend/colleague and I managed to enjoy some local Austin faves including Torchy’s Taco’s, Barley Swine and Horseshoe Lounge.

SXSW a success. Great for my day job, fantastic food, awesome people…but not good for my workout routine. After delicious tacos at Torchy’s, local brews and some fantastic dishes at Barley Swine which my vegetarian and vegan friends would avoid at all costs, my body is in serious need of a detox.

The next two weeks will be spent eating lots of salad, drinking smoothies and green juices, attending MyBootcamp (super pumped), yoga, running, spinning and maybe a little crossfit. All of this before I head to California for a week.

I have loved every moment of my recent travels. I choose to believe that because of me, “#killinit” is now a Twitter phenomenon (a Wonk can dream). Despite the greatness of my trips, I am happy to be back in DC and get back into my routine, exercise, diet and catching up with friends.

Chicago – #killinit at my friends’ fantastic wedding.
Austin – #killinit at SXSW with @lfoxmurph
DC – so ready to be #killinit at home


P.S. highlight of the week was definitely hanging out with the captains of the Discovery Channel’s Deadliest Catch. Capt. Keith, Capt. Johnathan & Capt. Sig took Austin by storm.

Deadliest Catch Killinit

2013: My Year of “Yes”

As January comes to a close, I thought it timely to (finally) share my one, and only New Year’s resolution. While many of us resolve to eat fewer candy bars and more veggies, drink less alcohol and more water, watch less TV and do more exercise, I have resolved to make 2013 my year of “yes.” While I strive, as I do every year, to be a little healthier than the prior 12 months, I have a feeling that 2013 will be a big year and needed a simple mantra that could complement and adapt to each passing day.

“Yes” and “no” are simple, yet powerful words. They inherently embody the positive and the negative. In reflecting upon 2012, I found that the “no” was a little too present in my vocabulary. Therefore, I am making a conscious decision in 2013 to say “yes” to those things that can enhance my experiences and contribute to my well-being.

I am dedicated to my fitness routines. Yoga will forever remain my passion, but in my exercise journey I have begun to say “yes” to a variety of different activities. Recently I have become mildly obsessed with spinning. Despite years of aversion to running, I find myself enjoying a short 3-mile escape from the daily grind. Boxing gave me the ability to be aggressive for a short 60 minutes. The punching bag embodies my obstacles, and after an hour of extreme cathartic release, I feel extremely liberated. Kettle bells, TRX, CrossFit and many more are on my 2013 “yes” list and will have accompanying WorkoutWonks musings.

My dad is an outstanding role model and provides some of the best advice I have ever, and probably will ever receive. The one nugget of wisdom that has particularly resonated with me is that the only thing that is constant in life is change. 2013 has already, and stands to have much more change. In acknowledging that fluctuations in the continuum of life and varied experiences are what make the journey worth exploring is without a doubt the most valuable insight I could have.

I encourage you to say yes to a meal or drinks with an old friend, yes to a concert on a school/work night, yes to an otherwise intimidating new fitness class or yes to a spontaneous vacation. It is because of those things to which you say yes that your life will change for the better. Some experiences may less than exciting, but some may end up lighting up your day, week, month or year. You never know unless you just say “yes”.

CAVEAT: There are a handful of things to which I will always say no. For an abbreviated list, see below:

  • I will not take candy from a stranger in an unmarked white van.
  • I will not wear high heels every day.
  • I will not cheer for Notre Dame (as a dedicated Boston College alumna).
  • I will not be convinced that yoga pants do not qualify as real pants.

Yoga Pants


Savasana is my Dad’s Best Pose

I am obsessed with yoga, in case you have not yet gotten that impression. My mother hates it. To her credit, she has tried and was very supportive when I began my teaching journey. However, she has opted out of any further yoga-ing. My dad on the other hand has embraced yoga which absolutely thrills me! While he steers clear of heated power classes (unless I am visiting and ask very very nicely), on his own initiative, he has built into his regular Cross Fit schedule a Sunday yoga class.

“It’s relaxing for my mind and more relaxing for my muscles following a week of burpees, wall balls and crazy Cross Fit torture.” – Lexie’s Dad

To show my support, I joined my dad on Sunday afternoon’s for Village yoga with Linda. She is very knowledgeable and as a teacher myself I am inspired by her class. Every week she teaches a basics class, which happen to be the most difficult to teach in my opinion, and presents the poses in a way that makes them accessible to all.

Please take this as my ringing yoga endorsement for all the bootcamp-ers, Cross Fit-ers, runners and spinners out there who have tight hips, tight shoulders tight hammies (hamstrings) and are just looking for some solid blissed out states of mind. Yoga highs are totally worth it.


Disco Inferno Failure

As I sit at my childhood desk in the beautiful Arizona, I reflect upon my first full day back on the home front. Upon my arrival I was greeted by blue skies, sun shining and civil engineering that made sense. Freeways have speed limits that are at least 60 MPH, all surface roads are perpendicular and are rarely one way streets. To celebrate my mom’s birthday we ate at a phenomenal restaurant that is the epitome of a “dining experience”. If you are ever in the Grand Canyon state I insist that you carve out a solid two and half hours and dine at Binkley’s. Today began just as sunshiny as yesterday, but soon, the unicorns and rainbows disappeared.

Whenever I am home, my parents are always generous enough to me get a week pass for the Village. It is my parent’s health club and when they ask nicely, the Village allows us children to return and embrace healthy lifestyles. After checking out their extensive online schedule (wasn’t feeling Pilates Barre, Crossfit, Fluid Fusion or Kinesis) so I stuck with what I know – spinning. Opting for the 60 minute Cycle to the Rhythm I arrived early, snagged my bike and set up. To start with the positives, instead of traditional lighting there were black lights which I like because they make me look tan and my teeth nice and white. Nice lights, smooth ride on the bikes, a comfortable saddle and the room was nice and warm so sweating out last night’s dinner wasn’t going to be an issue.

Positives aside, the music would have made my parents super happy. It was basically the soundtrack to Saturday Night Fever with some questionable house music mixed in. Now Disco Inferno and Boogie Nights wouldn’t have been an issue if the class had any coordination with the beat of the music. Vince, the instructor, had us doing the same 4 minute interval for the entire class. Never once was there a queue to match pedal strokes to the music and apparently when he said the number 3, that meant for us to speed up which I would have known if there was ever an explanation. To give Vince the benefit of the doubt, it certainly seemed that most people had been to his class at least once before. My assumption is that they understood his somewhat spastic instruction and inclination to yell despite the fact that his microphone was functioning on all cylinders.

Did I sweat, yes. Did I work hard, yes (thanks to my own tension increase since Vince only suggested we do so every 30 minutes). Will I be going back to Vince’s class this week or ever again, no. I will use my 10 day mooch pass to explore the other instructors and classes that the Village has to offer. It is supposed to be 80 and sunny this week, maybe I will get into Fluid Fusion(trendy water aerobics)? Mariah swears by it.

 I wore all black today. I am switching over my wardrobe to only black exercise clothing with the occasional neon accessory.


My Excuse to Wear Legwarmers with Spinning Shoes

Despite being in a post-election daze, I managed to get myself together enough to make it to Barre Ride at Revolve on Wednesday night. After teaching a yoga class in my office conference rooms (Kristine is obviously a rockstar attendee), I rolled up my mat, grabbed my Shimano’s, donned some Lululemon and headed to Clarendon.

Grant teaches the Wednesday 7:30 PM Barre Ride and if are unfamiliar with the class, here is a breakdown: 30-40 minutes of spin (expect lots of intervals with lots of tension and Dubstep beats to match) and 20-30 minutes of barre exercises. The most challenging part of Barre Ride is that by the time you are done with the spinning, your legs are feeling the burn and then come squats, lunges and more squats. Let’s just say that walking home takes me an extra 10 minutes.

In the corner of the spin studio are bins filled with what can be described as mini kickballs. Extra squishy and shiny  these are not toys! They are more like round, bouncy upper-body exhausters that do their job well. With arms extended and ball squeezed into an oval we squat and lunge like crazy. Add in some relevees (that is French for re-lift  but in Barre language it means rise on to your toes, and/or squat, bicep curl, chest press etc…)

The title sounds so friendly, and if all you heard were the awesome beats coming from the studio you wouldn’t expect a room filled with sweaty spinners and ballet hybrid workout crazies. Don’t be fooled. It is hard work, but you feel fantastic afterwards and despite the longer than normal walk home, you can expect a solid night’s sleep and a great feeling the following AM.

Bust out your spin shoes and legwarmers and check it out!