Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Happy feet travel around the world

Back in 2014, I wondered where I would head to 2015.  Not surprisingly, my feet ended up where they belong....firmly back home in Los Angeles.

2015 was not a great year for me, travel-wise.  Because of the move and everything else that comes with it, I only got to go on vacation once (I'm not complaining, just stating the facts). Because I only had time for one vacation, I knew I had to make it count.  This lone vacation was for a destination wedding in the Dominican Republic for my gorgeous friend Olesya. It was my first time there and I highly enjoyed it - great company and such beautiful beaches.  It was a vacation for the books, for sure!

This year is another busy one for me.  I started off great with a vacation to celebrate another wedding - my brother's (see last post).  Another vacation for the books and yet, none of these destinations are on my travel bucket list!  Here's the updated list (updated in 2014):

1. Canary Islands
2. Maldives
3. Thailand
4. Santorini (ok, all of Greece)
5. Italy - Positano, Florence, Rome, Venice, Vatican City
6. Siem Reap
7. Forbidden City in China
8. France - Lourdes, Paris,
9. Costa Rica March 2014 (yay!)
10. Peru
11. Argentina
12. Spain - all over, not just Barcelona and Madrid
13. Croatia - September 2014
14. Morocco
15. Mauritius
16. South Africa

And my last 4 destinations - Dominican Republic, Bali, Philippines and Vietnam are nowhere on this list.  Sigh.  I should probably get cracking on this list before I head anywhere else.

Oh, who am I kidding?!?  I'll go wherever the wind takes me and I have the rest of my life to work on this list.  If anything, this list will only get longer.  Already thinking of adding Iceland, Ireland and Scotland to the list.  :)

Where are you headed this year???  XOXO

Happy New Year

I know it's almost two months too late for a Happy New Year post but bear with me because although it has only been a couple months into the year, I have been super busy.

This year started off with an awesome vacation my brothers and my travel buddy.  Couldn't have asked for a better way to start the year.  Cheers to the new year!!

2016 Vacation from James Zamora on Vimeo.

PS - Thanks for the video James.  Awesome job!

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Boxing at Prevail Los Angeles

When I was still in NYC, I started taking boxing classes and really enjoyed it as a workout.  I took classes at Title Boxing Club and The Kickbox Haus.  Around March 2015, I knew I was going to be moving back to LA so I started "researching" boxing gyms.  This mainly involved stalking ClassPass' instagram account and searching for boxing hashtags.  That's how I found Prevail.  I started stalking their instagram account, checked out their website and their Yelp reviews (for whatever these are worth).

Fast forward to end of May, I finally am back in LA and I finally got to take a class at Prevail.  The only setback was I didn't have my wraps or my gloves (my stuff was still in transit from NYC) but lucky me, wraps and gloves are free for your first class.  I ended up buying new wraps and borrowing their gloves.  I then followed the "regulars" into the back room where either 1.) the magic happens or 2.) I die and go to hell.  It must've been my lucky day because while the magic didn't quite happen, I didn't die.

The class itself was a good workout.  My class was divided into 6 "stations" with groups of 3 rotating through.  We started with a short warmup before going through the circuit which I actually enjoyed.  My prior classes were all bag work and conditioning exercises so it was a new experience for me to actually do mitt work and "noodles" - basically one-on-one with preset moves.  Overall, a great workout with fun and varied exercises that worked the entire body.

Why did I not experience the magic??  Let me explain.  As a first-timer at this studio, I was a little apprehensive.  I guess that's just me with my first time doing anything.  Anyway, as a first timer, I thought that they would at least explain how they run the classes or where to put my stuff or where the bathroom is (if there is one).  Basically, give me a brief rundown of the place.  I've never been here before, fuckin' introduce me to the damn place.  Furthermore, the class is about to begin and I hear the instructor ask one of the newbies to please leave the water bottle outside of the room.  This is what I'm talking about.  If the people at the front actually gave us a quick intro to the place, we wouldn't have to look like fools.  Maybe they were having an off-day, maybe they're just standoffish, who knows.

Because of this last bit, I haven't actually been back to the studio.  I did purchase a one-month unlimited package just because I really do enjoy boxing as a workout.  But I am giving this place another chance and not just because I bought the package but also because everyone deserves a second chance.  I've also asked my little brother to come along so I hope he likes it at least.

Do you box?  xoxo

Monday, June 8, 2015

Sweat at One Down Dog

The first class I signed up for when I got back to LA was a yoga class at One Down Dog in Silverlake. I took a class at this studio when I was visiting in December and I remember falling in love with the place.  Not only were the people super friendly, their merchandise inventory is also amazing.

This time around, I signed up for "Sweat".  I'm not a yoga newbie so I wanted a class that was going to challenge me a little bit and I figured a class called "Sweat" would do it.  On their website, the class is described as yoga with a cardio boost.  Misjudging LA traffic, I arrived at the studio about 35 minutes early so I had time to browse their merchandise.  I ended up purchasing a new yoga mat (mine is still in transit) and really had to stop myself from buying anything more.

The class itself was great.  The room was a warm 82 degrees, nice not uncomfortable.  The instructor was great.  She adjust form when she needed, demonstrated a pose when needed and more importantly she had a positive vibe and a killer 90s playlist.  The class is a little faster paced than the average yoga class but I kept up ok.  Did I sweat?  You betcha (not dripping sweat coz even hot yoga can't get me to drip sweat).  Would I go again?  Most definitely.  I haven't tried a lot of yoga spots in town but this is hands down one of my faves.

Namaste One Down Dog.  'Til the next class.

Where do you get your yoga on?  xoxo

Saturday, June 6, 2015

It's nice to be home

I recently moved back to Los Angeles after 5 years in New York City.  I've got to say it's been nice.  I haven't really done much except workout and go to job interviews.  Seriously loving funemployment at the moment but I know this can't last much longer.  There are still bills to be paid and money to be made!

Speaking of funemployment, I actually get to have this time to get to know the LA studios that participate in ClassPass.  So far I've been to 5 different studios and they were all ok.  I actually signed up for an unlimited month for one of those studios (more on this later).  If you don't know me (and most of you don't), I'm a stickler about my workout schedule.  Not only does it have to be coordinated with my work and play time (I don't like to workout in the weekends), all the classes that I take have to make sense together for what I am trying to achieve (upper body strength and a toned physique). So far, I am still trying to piece that schedule together by exploring different studios in the city.  I haven't been back that long (less than 3 weeks) and I still have a lot of studios to try.  Hopefully, I'll find ones that I like that work with my schedule.  Until then, I'll be hopping from one place to the next.

How do you figure out your workout schedule?  xoxo

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Happy Nurses Week!

Happy Nurses Week to all my fellow nurses!

I wasn't one of those people who always wanted to be a nurse.  I sort of got into it by accident, literally.  In November 2005, I was in a car accident and although I only broke my arm I had to stay in the hospital for about a week.  That week, my life trajectory changed.  That path took me to New York City where I have stayed for the past five years.

These past five years I have studied and crammed and had sleepless nights because of school.  When I started working it didn't really get that much better.  More sleepless nights, minor panic attacks...basically living the stress-laden dream that is nursing.  Then to top it off, I went back to school to finish my Master's degree so on top of work-induced stress and panic, I added on school-induced stress and more sleepless nights.  Was I crazy to do so?  Maybe, maybe not.  At the end of this journey, I am a stronger person.  Slightly more crazy and still a little bit immature but definitely stronger and more confident.

In this journey, I made some really great friends.  Friends that understand what it's like to be a nurse.  Friends that understand the demands of the job.  Friends that have the same crazy schedule.  Friends that I hope to have for a lifetime....even after I move back to California.

Again, happy nurses week!  Tell a nurse "thanks!" next time you see them.


Sunday, January 25, 2015

Working off stress

This year started off rocky at work.  I feel extremely overworked and exhausted.  If it continues this way for the next couple of months, I will age 10 years too soon.  My solution? Work-wise, no idea.  I guess I just have to be more vigilant and conscientious even more than I have been.  I need to be systematic but also keep myself educated.  A tall order, but a necessary one.

Stress-wise, working out has been very helpful in keeping me safe.  Again, thanks to classpass, I have been adding newer workouts to my schedule just to keep it fresh.  This past month, I have tried new classes and have given old ones another chance (I'm looking at you Bikram).  So far, my favorite has to be Fit Rxn NYC.  I have only taken two classes so far but I always look forward to booking the next one.  The classes I have taken there are TRX Mash-up and 30/30.  Of the two, TRX Mash-up is definitely more intense.  I was sore for two days after this class and I haven't been sore from a workout since November 2014.  Definitely not for the faint of heart or the weak-willed as my wrists could barely handle the work but I got through it and I feel more bad-ass because of it.  30/30 is a spin/TRX combo, not as intense as the mash-up but still a good work-out (didn't make me sore at all).

This coming week I have signed up 2 strength classes, yoga and cardio.  I like having a balanced workout week.  Before I incorporated yoga into my workouts, I felt tired all the time.  With the addition of yoga, I feel more relaxed and am starting to get more flexible.  I have also fallen in love with boxing and kickboxing and even bought gloves.  These classes are added into the mix once or twice a week - my favorites are Title Boxing and Kickbox Haus.  I also try to take a barre class once a week - my favorite is FlyBarre.  No matter how many times I've done this class, it always leaves me sore.  A great core workout and never gets boring.

Working out 4-5 times a week has given me a more zen state of mind when it comes to my job.  The time I spend working out is my "me time", where I spend about an hour on just me and nothing else.  There's the added benefit of getting stronger and more fit because as the saying goes, "Summer bodies are made in the winter".

How do you guys destress?  xoxo

#classpasschallenge #passthehappy