Gyms Reopen as COVID Continues

Gyms Reopen as COVID Continues

Gyms around the country have begun to reopen as coronavirus cases continue to rise. My gym, Equinox Austin reopened on June 1st and although I was skeptical about going back at first, I have to say that I feel incredibly safe when I am there.

Before the pandemic, I would work out four to five times a week and not having the option to go to the gym during lockdown was challenging for me. The classes at Equinox are taught by some of the most talented and inspiring people who not only motivate you to take your workout to another level, but they also make you leave feeling better mentally and physically.

The entrance of Equinox Austin.

I have been a member at Equinox since 2015 and I have always been impressed with their level of cleanliness and small class sizes, but now in the time of COVID, they have taken their standards to another level. In May, ahead of the gym’s post-lockdown re-opening, I had to read and sign what seemed like dozens of pages of new guidelines. Before each visit I make now, I have to read and sign a shortened health declaration before I am allowed inside.

Explanation of the Equinox Health Declaration.

The new rules at Equinox require members to make appointments to visit the gym–whether you’re going for a group fitness class, a personal training session or just to use an elliptical, you must schedule your visit in advance. Once in the gym, members and staff are required to wear face masks until they are working out. A member of the Equinox staff also checks everyone’s temperature at the door…anyone with over a 100 degree temperature will not be allowed in the gym.

All guests entering the gym are stopped at the door to get their temperature checked. Anyone with over 100 degrees will not be admitted.

Since going back to the gym, I have only attended group fitness classes and I have loved how much Equinox is respecting spacing, safety and cleanliness. In rooms that can fit up to 40, classes have been limited to under 15 people. All of the spots in the classes are spaced at least six feet apart and cleaned equipment is set out for each guest. Equinox has also shortened class times to allow more time in between classes for a deep cleaning of the studios. During class, instructors do not walk around the class, they stay at the front of the room to maintain social distancing standards.

Since June, I have not seen crowds of people and the equipment looks very clean in the main parts of the gym. There are also sanitizing stations in several locations around Equinox. To maintain cleanliness standards, Equinox is not providing their iconic chilled eucalyptus towels, which I kind of live for, but they do offer clean towels in plastic bags upon arrival.

One of the many sanitizing stations at Equinox.

One other heartbreaking change at the gym is that the steam room has been closed since the reopening. I used to use the steam room two or three times a week before coronavirus because of the many benefits steam can offer for skin and health, but it was also just so relaxing. Social distancing is a top priority in the bathroom as well. Sinks, bathroom stalls and showers are being rotated to maximize spacing and to make sure they aren’t being over-used.

The bathroom sinks at Equinox Austin.

Have you gone back to the gym yet? I hope these insights help with your decision making on whether to go back into the gym or not. If you have any questions I have not answered in this post, please leave me a comment and let me know!

XO,

Brit

Brit’s Father’s Day Gift Picks

Brit’s Father’s Day Gift Picks

Father’s Day is just around the corner, friends! I don’t know about you, but I am a daddy’s girl through and through. Not only do I look like my dad, but he is also my best friend. Although one day of the year is not nearly enough to celebrate my dad, I do like using this holiday to show him some love.

My parents do not really like getting gifts, I honestly think they would prefer to never get gifts and just give to others, but I insist on getting them something. In the past couple of years I have really honed in on how to buy gifts for my mom and dad and people who “don’t like getting gifts.” The trick is to watch what they buy for themselves and then get them that, with a slight elevation. For example, my dad loves golfing and golfers go through a lot of golf balls. So I bought him a set of Pro V1 golf balls and had them customized to say “Lar Bear” on the balls. This little addition does not cost much more than the golf balls would if you bought them in the store, but the sentiment goes a long way.

All of that being said, I’ve come up with a list of gifts that I think my dad and many more will love for Father’s Day this year, but I know for sure that my dad will most enjoy the card I write him. So don’t forget to add a beautiful note to your dad to remind them how much you love them!I hope you enjoy this gift guide and that you have a wonderful Father’s Day!

XO,

Brit

Staying Active at Home

Staying Active at Home

Working out has been a part of my daily routine since I was in high school and when the quarantine caused gyms to close, I was thrown for loop. Whether it is yoga, cycling, cardio kickboxing or walking, working out is essential for me to stay healthy physically and mentally.

During quarantine, I have gone on long walks every day and have loved discovering new virtual workouts. In Austin, there are a number of trails to walk on that have remained uncrowded.


Town Lake in Austin, Texas.

As far as virtual workouts, I have been living for Megan Roup’s Sculpt Society and Baye Tilson’s yoga Youtube classes. On the Sculpt Society app, Megan provides such a wide range of classes from dance cardio to sculpting and meditation. She also offers several different lengths of classes–from 10 to 50 minutes so you can squeeze in a workout even on your busiest day.

Baye Tilson. Photo courtesy of Baye’s Instagram account.

Baye’s yoga classes have also been amazing and they are completely free to view. She regularly teaches yoga at Black Swan Yoga in Houston, Texas. She has a great energy and also offers multiple class lengths so you can always fit it into your schedule.

Prepping for a workout at home in my favorite new tennis shoes.

For me, working out is always more fun when I have a cute outfit. I recently got these multi-colored Stella McCartney for Adidas tennis shoes on the Shopbop sale and am in love with them. They are lightweight, but provide enough support for the jumping required in many of the Sculpt Society classes. I have also been loving these scalloped yoga pants from Lululemon.

What are your favorite at-home workouts? Leave me a comment and let me know below!

XO,

Brit