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We're Expecting A MegaMama Giveaway!

The MegaMamas class is back on the schedule at the newly tranformed, hot pink, expanded Studio (MDR).

To celebrate, we are giving you the chance to WIN 1 of 3 books in the series: "What to Expect Before You're Expecting," "What to Expect When You're Expecting," and "What to Expect The First Year."

At The Studio MDR, we want to remind you about the importance of health and fitness: before, during and after pregnancy. Between exercise, eating right and "reading right", you will know what to moves to make on the journey to MegaMama-hood with this fun contest.

The "What to Expect When You're Expecting" series by Heidi Murkoff and Sharon Mazel has been described as "the bible" of American pregnancy and is a must read before, during and after pregnancy.

Follow these 2 SIMPLE steps to enter our contest: 1) LIKE The Studio (MDR) on Facebook. 2) Comment on this blog post or on the related Facebook post with your favorite unique celebrity baby name and mention which book you would like to enter to win.

*** BONUS ENTRY: 3) Get an additional entry by attending a MegaMamas class in October or the first two weeks of November.

SIGN UP FOR CLASS HERE.

We're "expecting" you in MegaMamas and look forward to hearing your favorite celebrity baby names!

Entries must be submitted by midnight on Monday, November 19 and the winner will be announced on Facebook on Wednesday, November 21.

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Who Pinned That (Match The Pinterest Pic)

At The Studio (MDR), keeping you on your toes is something we love to do literally (catfish push up, anyone?) So, we hope you like this little Pinterest challenge that we're posing to you! Ok, this should be pretty simple. See the Pinterest pics below? They were hand picked by the following trainers and team members at The Studio MDR:

Natalya, Jessi, Mary, Lisa, Jennifer and Lindsay.

A.

B.

C.

D.

E.

F.

Our question to you is, "who pinned what?"

Your question to us may be, "Why should I answer that? What's in it for me?"

We're glad you asked! Everyone who matches the correct Pinterest pic to it's appropriate trainer/team member gets entered into a raffle! That means if you miss one, your name won't go into the drawing for the big, grand prize but don't worry--we have faith in your pairing skills, (after all you are warriors).

Each photo has been assigned a letter of the alphabet (A-F). Each team member has been assigned a corresponding number (1-6).

Natalya-1, Jennifer-2, Jessi,-3, Mary-4, Lindsay-5, Lisa-6.

Match a letter and number to make a guess. As an example, you would say B-3 if you thought Jessi pinned the "Don't wait photo." Get ready, get set, get guessing. Share your Pinterest pic matches in the comment box below.

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Lisa's Likes: The Local Edition

It's Thursday which means, time for another Lisa's Likes blog post. This week, Lisa Hirsch provides a list of some of her favorite local LA businesses (and one brand)!

Lisa says,

1) They say the eyes are the window to the soul, so I have to frame mine with something fabulous and enticing. Eyes on Main located on Main Street in Santa Monica is the only place I go. My of the moment favorite brand is Cutler & Gross. They are a must have!

(2) Okay I admit it - I love the sun. I don't drink. I don't smoke. My vice is sunshine. LA Based Kate Somerville's Protect SPF 55 Serum Sunscreen is an oil free and quick absorbing serum that provides powerful UV Protection. Boys and girls, besides keeping our bodies fit, we must protect our skin so wear your sunscreen. That's an order.

(3) Oscar's Cerveteca on Rose Avenue located in Venice. - La Puente Backyard Burger or Hoyos Peruvian Sashimi are my go-to's on this delicious menu. All I have to say is - YUM! With it's laid-back neighborhood vibe and great food, you will see me here at least once a week.

(4) Bike Attack on Main Street in Santa Monica. - Red Biria Bike with a basket on front and back!  Done and Done.  Love the whole crew there!

(5) Cow's End Cafe in the Marina Del Rey,"where the locals hang".  Who needs an (ahem) chain coffee institution when we have this incredible place right in the hood!  Clabe's staff are accommodating, nice and make a mean red-eye for us super early risers!

What's your favorite local business? (besides The Studio (MDR), of course). Let us know in the comments box below.

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Lisa's Likes-A Protein Packed Breakfast at Canali Cafe in Venice

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day! And many people skip it because they're "too busy" or don't have time. Lisa Hirsch makes sure to have a protein packed breakfast at one of her favorite local spots:  Canali Cafe. It's a stones throw away from The Studio (MDR) and besides breakfast, Canali is one of her fav places for lunch, dinner and even staff meetings. The Lisa's Likes Business and Beauty Breakfast: Poached eggs & steamed spinach served with an english muffin, 1 cup of coffee and a dash of non-fat milk.

The breakdown:

Eggs--Protein in the morning helps prevent a midday crash and burn due to fluctuating sugar levels from high carb breakfasts.

Spinach--packed with Iron, definitely something all women need.

English Muffin--Client and celebrity dietitian Ashely Koff says, "you need a few carbs after a MDR workout."

1 cup of coffee--Everything in moderation, including caffeine! Skip the half and half for non-fat milk.

Canali Cafe is located at 123 Washington Blvd, Marina Del Rey, CA.

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A Special Offer From Freshology

Earlier this year, The Studio (MDR) participated in a series of events surrounding Pregnancy Awareness Month. We met a lot of amazing women focused on being fit and making healthy choices during their pregnancies. And, since we have our own little community of MegaMama's (moms to be who workout at our studio), we wanted to highlight one of the great contacts we made through Pregnancy Awareness Month, Freshology.com This is a special offer on their FreshMommy meal program. FRESHMOMMY is a fresh and delicious calorie controlled meal delivery program for pre and post natal women. Proper nutrition is an essential part of a healthy pregnancy and postnatal life, and FRESHMOMMY provides all the daily nutritional requirements, featuring a menu with nutrient-rich ingredients, to help you maintain good health and feel vibrant.

The Freshology FRESHMOMMY plan is designed to address the specific nutritional needs of pregnant and nursing mothers. The menu is calorie adjusted and customized by ingredients based on pre- and postnatal stages. No shopping, no cooking, no fuss for mom! Just relax and enjoy.

For a limited time, Freshology is offering The Studio (MDR) clients an exclusive offer on our gourmet fresh programs. Receive $125 off a FRESHMOMMY or FRESHDINING*** gourmet meal program. Use code FRESHSTUDIO512 at checkout by August 31, 2012.

Call Freshology at 877.893.7374 to set up your daily breakfast, lunch, snack, dinner and dessert, delivered to your front door daily, or visit FRESHMOMMY by Freshology online.

***If you are not pregnant or nursing, and are looking for a meal program designed for weight loss, please review our FRESHDINING program. FRESHDINING is a fresh meal delivery program designed to help you lose weight and live a healthy lifestyle.

You can expect every one of your daily deliveries not only to taste delicious, but also to provide maximum nutritional benefit!

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Lisa's Likes--Travel Essentials (Just In Time For The 4th of July)

It’s official.  SUMMER is here! Hello June, July, August and sun.

But before we get too ahead of ourselves, remember those resolutions that you set back in January? Of course you do (especially when you start to see your hard work pay off as you slip on your swimwear and head to the beach). 

It's important to remember those resolutions and honor your commitments to push yourself to new limits at The Studio (MDR), but what's equally important is taking time to relax and simply enjoy some R&R.  Nothing says "relaxing" like going on a summer vacation, and SimplyStylist.com recently asked our own, Lisa Hirsch, to share the must-haves in her travel bag.

Lisa's picks are fashionable, practical and functional but our personal fave on the list is the Luna Chocolate Dipped Coconut Bar For women.  Lisa admits, “Airports are the worst when I’m trying to eat healthy so I always have a couple of Luna Bars on hand. Chocolate Dipped Coconut are my favorite, especially when I get stuck on an unexpected layover.”

To read the full article, click here.

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Lisa's Favorite Low-Cal Recipes

Perhaps you read Lisa's Letter in The Studio (MDR) newsletter OR you were just searching online for delicious and nutritious summer recipes. Our blog and the beautiful Lisa N. Hirsch have you covered so read below! Say cheers to summer with a splash of Sangria!

Lisa says "although limiting alcohol intake or cutting it out all together is a great way to cut back on calories, for those gals and gents who like to indulge in a sparkling beverage or two, try this Sparkling Sangria Blanco: it's half the calories of the real thing!"

Ingredients

2 (750-ml) bottles white Spanish wine, such as Albarino (Galacia), Viura (Rioja), Verdejo (Rueda), or Sauvignon Blanc 2 cans of Hansens diet lemon-lime soda
1 orange, juiced 1/2 cup sliced fresh strawberries 1/2 orange, halved and thinly sliced 1/2 lemon, halved and thinly sliced 1/2 cup raspberries 1/2 peach, pit removed and sliced into thin wedges 1/2 (10-ounce) bottle club soda, chilled

Directions

Combine the wine, Hansens, and orange juice in a large pitcher and stir. Add the fruit and stir well to combine. Cover and refrigerate until well chilled, about 2 hours. Stir in the club soda and serve the sangria in large wine glasses, over ice if desired.

Grilled Brussel Sprouts  So delish -- and healthy!

Ingredients 1 pound Brussels sprouts, as uniform in size as possible* 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 tablespoon minced garlic 1 teaspoon dry mustard 1 teaspoon smoked paprika 1 teaspoon kosher salt 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions

*Cook's Note: In order to facilitate even cooking, it is important that the Brussels sprouts be as uniform in size and shape as possible.

Heat a grill to medium. Cut off the stem end of the Brussels sprouts and remove any yellowing outer leaves. Place the Brussels sprouts into a large, microwave safe mixing bowl and heat in the microwave on high for 3 minutes. Add the olive oil, garlic, mustard, paprika and salt and toss to combine. Allow the sprouts to cool until you can handle them. Skewer 4 to 5 Brussels sprouts onto each metal skewer with the stem ends facing in the same direction, leaving at least 1/2-inch in between each sprout. Place the skewers onto the grill with stem end closest to the flame. Cover and cook for 5 minutes. Turn the skewers over and continue to cook for another 5 minutes. Serve as is or for additional flavor, remove the sprouts from the skewers, return them to the original mixing bowl and toss with any of the remaining oil and garlic mixture before serving.

Lastly, to make this meal complete, Lisa suggests you get that protein in.

Mahi Mahi Lettuce Wraps  Low carb, high protein, lots of flavor!

Ingredients 1 mango, diced 2 plum tomatoes, diced 1 red onion, diced 1/2 jalapenos, diced 3 tablespoons chopped cilantro leaves 2 limes, juiced Salt and pepper 2 mahi mahi fillets Olive oil, as needed Lettuce leaves (recommended butter or romaine)

Directions

Preheat grill or grill pan to medium-high heat. Combine the mango, tomatoes, jalapeno, cilantro and lime juice in a medium mixing bowl and season with salt and pepper. Season the fish with salt and pepper and brush with olive oil. Grill for roughly 3 to 4 minutes per side, until just opaque in the center. Set aside to cool.

When slightly cool, chop into large chunks. Add to the reserved salsa and fold carefully as to not break up the fish. Add mixture to the middle of the lettuce leaves and roll.

Final words of advice? Pick one or pick all of these recipes to prepare. Just be sure to enjoy them. Look it+feel it+live it+and keep it low cal!

For more information on The Studio (MDR), visit www.thestudiomdr.com

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Lisa's Likes: Summer Meeting Style

When I’m not working at The Studio (MDR), you will probably find me attending a meeting about the studio somewhere nearby, like Zinque on Abbot Kinney.  And when meetings stack up, I rely on some of my personal, favorite things to get me through the day (and sometimes on through the night!). First thing’s first – the outfit.  Joie is one of my "go-to" brands when I’m not in my Lulu’s or Beyond Yoga wear.  This dress is just as comfortable as a pair of work out pants & a tank, but it looks way better for a stroll down Washington as I head to dinner at Casa Ado on the beach.  I pair it with flat gladiator sandals for day and chic wedges in the evening.

Like many of you, I am addicted to my iPad.  I use it for so many things…to approve expansion & design plans for the studio, to listen to audio books on everything from Feng Shui to Shades of Grey (my students are obsessed with it!!!), to watch our “coming soon” MDR workouts on YouTube, and to check emails and class sign-ups.  It goes with me everywhere and I store it in an adorable Rebecca Minkoff case (my fave).

Accessories make my look complete.  My necklace is a gift from me to myself for my 40th birthday.  A girl should never have to wait for diamonds and I didn't intend to!

Fendi is making a big comeback on the fashion scene. I love pairing designer bags with my workout clothes. It makes me feel chic even after I break a MDR-induced sweat.  Also, I support local businesses (since I own one), so I love buying my eyewear at my friend Susie's store - Eyes on Main. Not only does her eyewear scream style, but it supports the local economy and helps my baby blues see!

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Healthy Feet Will Really Knock Your Socks Off....A Guest Post From ToeSox

Each part of our body is designed for a purpose. Our legs to walk. Our eyes to see. Our thumbs to grab. And our toes to balance. But what you may not know is that one fourth of all the bones in the human body are down in your feet. These "two planks" bear the weight of our entire bodies. They receive a lot of stress and are often neglected. Imagine having a headache every day. You would probably seek medical attention for the pain. However, we are more apt to ignore symptoms of foot pain…we just “get over it.”

But as Socrates said:  “When our feet hurt, we hurt all over.”

Our feet are superbly designed between 10 toes, 52 bones (26 in each foot), 33 joints, 20 muscles, and hundreds of sensory receptors. ToeSox are superbly designed too. Not just to prevent you from sliding or to minimize wear and tear on a Megaformer machine or yoga mat.

Our toes, (each of them significant), separate to allow us to grip the ground, spring our bodies into motion, and help us stand still and straight. Toes are an important part of the push-off action humans use while walking, running, and climbing stairs.

Why is it that we take off our shoes right when we get home? Because it feels good. We cram our feet into shoes, forcing the toes together and making them act as a hoof. When the toes are drawn together, abductor muscles on the outer and inner foot can’t activate, and can atrophy due to lack of use.

If toes are stiff, the smoothness and efficiency of our gait will be affected, and other joints and muscles will have to compensate for the disturbance in the chain of actions. As these compensations continue, they may contribute to pain elsewhere in the body. Two-thirds of those with chronic foot pain say their foot issue has created some sort of disability elsewhere – decreasing balance, increasing soreness in the knees and hips, or preventing them from starting or maintaining a healthy exercise routine.

As often as you can, let your toes wiggle with their five toe natural movement. Wearing ToeSox not only supports the anatomical structure of the foot, but they provide gentle space between each toe which encourages the toes to spread, circulation to increase and muscles to engage. Strong feet result in enhanced agility, balance, posture, and overall body wellness.

Assess your foot health by following these simple steps for self-examination as recommended by American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society (AOFAS):

•Skin: Check your skin for calluses, blisters or areas of irritation. Now stand next to your shoes. Are they shaped like your feet or are they causing areas of constriction that may result in calluses, blisters or irritation? Now put your hand inside your shoe. Are there seams, tacks or rough places in the shoe that correspond to the areas of irritation, calluses or blisters on your feet?
•Circulation: Look at the color of your toes. Are they red, pink, purple or blue? Press down on the nail of your big toe until the color blanches. Now let go and allow the blood flow to return to your toe. The return of normal color should take 2-5 seconds in a person with average circulation.
•Flexibility: How flexible are your toes? Try to pick up a marble (excellent) or a small dishtowel (good). To test your ankle flexibility, hang your heel over the edge of a stair while standing on the stair facing the stair. Now let the heel go below the level of the stair. If this causes pain, stop the test. If your heel goes below the level of the stair without causing strain in your calf, that is excellent. If there is some strain, this can be improved with flexibility exercises.
•Sensation: Take a pencil eraser and lightly run it on the top, bottom and both sides of your feet. The sensation should feel equal in all quadrants. It may tickle on the bottom of the feet. That is normal.
•Pain: There should be no foot pain in the average foot. If there is, learn what is causing the foot pain.
•Balance: A good test for balance involves standing on one foot, with your arms out to the side and your eyes closed. If you are less than 30 years old, you should be able to balance for 15 seconds, 30-40 years old for 12 seconds, 40-50 years old for 10 seconds, and over 50 years old for 7 seconds. This can be improved with exercises.

 

For more information on ToeSox, please visit www.toesox.com
For more information The Studio MDR or to purchase a pair of ToeSox, visit www.thestudiomdr.com

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BABYLates: New Name, New Time, Same Prenatal Exercise Benefits

BABYLates has a new name. To honor the amazing efforts of our moms (not to mention the WONDERFUL results from our megaformer machines), we are now calling the class MegaMama. And for mama's convenience, this class now takes place on Saturdays at 4:15 pm.

If you haven't tried it before, you may be asking yourself "Why should I try MegaMamas & workout on the the Megaformer?"

Here's the answer. Your body changes during pregnancy, a lot. And this particular pre and post natal workout is specifically designed to change with you as your body takes this journey.

What changes occur with pregnancy?

  1. Posture changes. The weight of the baby, especially as they grow, puts a strain on almost every part of your body. As it gets a little harder to maneuver around, even getting  out of a chair can seem like a workout. As the creator of MegaMamas, our instructor Jessi Piha ensures that you will be safe. Depending on the term of your pregnancy, she will give you all a fun, effective workout experience that's just perfect for your already achey muscles.
  2. Keep those abs strong and fab! Yes, you have abdominal muscles even when you are pregnant. They are just going to get stretched out & as long as you keep them strong during pregnancy, the ability to recover that tight 6 pack can absolutely be done.
  3. Post pregnancy exercise is just as important as prenatal exercise. After those 9 months of patiently waiting, the stork has come and your bun in the oven is finally home. You may want to exercise to carve out some alone time or to keep up with your healthy lifestyle. BUT, jumping back into a workout routine full throttle is not recommended. With that said, MegaMamas is the perfect combination of strength training, cardio, and resistance training post delivery when your doctor has approved exercise for you again.

MegaMama's is open to moms of ALL experience levels. While we focus on a pace appropriate for pre and post natal clients, any mom looking to take some Saturday time to herself is welcome to come to class!

To sign up or to learn more, please visit our website at www.thestudiomdr.com

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Lisa's Likes - Summer Read

Spring’s arrival is just a reminder that summer is coming!   This is the time of the year that I revel in living and working on the Westside in Los Angeles.  It really doesn’t get much better than stepping out of The Studio (MDR) after a sweat-drenching total body workout and feeling the warm sun on my skin along with the cool ocean breeze that is literally steps away. Beach days in Venice are the best, especially on the weekend.  Admittedly, I am attached to my Blackberry and MacBook, but there is something to be said about curling up on the sand with a good, old book.  And Teacher Appreciation Week reminded me of one of my favorite teachers, Ms.Simon, who encouraged me to read The Alchemist.  This classic is one of those books I read over and over again.  Paulo Coelho’s fable is powerful, thought provoking and inspiring– I truly believe EVERYONE should read it.  This book is bursting with optimism and reminds us that we really can do anything we want to do.

“There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.”

― Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist

As Coelho eloquently puts it, "It's the possibility of having a dream come true that makes life interesting" and I wake up every morning with such a feeling of gratitude that my dream came true when The Studio (MDR) opened its doors.

So, fellow bookworms, what are you reading right now?

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Meatless Monday: Green Smoothie

We all know it’s important to eat our veggies, but sometimes it can be tough to incorporate the vegetables we need each day into our diet especially if we may be working long hours or eating on the go.  So, what's the Studio (MDR) solution for you?

A green smoothie, which by the way is a great way to get key nutrients in one quick, easy and, most importantly, delicious drink! (And it's a perfect dessert, snack or meal for Meatless Monday).

You may have noticed the recent upswing in juice cleanses lately (especially right after new years), and while juicing fruits and vegetables is a fantastic way for the body to absorb nutrients, blending a green smoothie provides more nutritional benefits since the pulp isn’t extracted.

Contrary to what you think, you can have fun with green smoothies by trying different concoctions of your favorite vegetables mixed with fruit.  As an added bonus, you can include a spoonful of Greek yogurt for protein, probiotics and a thicker, more filling smoothie!

Here is a fantastic, refreshing smoothie that is low in fat, high in fiber and is gluten free:

2 Cups Spinach
2 Cups Diced Cucumbers
2 Ribs Celery
1 Tablespoon Fresh Ginger
1 Handful Parsley
2 Apples, cored but not peeled
1 Tablespoon Lime Juice
1 Spoonful Greek Yogurt (optional)

Blend all ingredients until very smooth and enjoy!

What are your favorite green smoothie or Meatless Monday recipes? Feel free to share them in the comments section.  Most importantly, cheers to your health!

Like our blog? You'll love our community. Keep up with The Studio (MDR) via Facebook and Twitter, here are the links:

https://www.facebook.com/TheStudioMDR

https://twitter.com/thestudiomdr

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Goodbye Workout DVD's, Hello Bridal Body! Guest Post From The Studio (MDR) Client Emily Lavender

This is a guest post from The Studio (MDR) client, Emily Lavender.  Emily, 24, is a Marketing Director for Circus Vargas. When she's not working or working out, she enjoys spending time with her fiance and getting reacquainted with LA after living in Orange County for 6 years.

My future sister-in-law, Colleen, brought me to The Studio (MDR) for the first time because she insisted it was unlike anything else I had ever done before and that I would get hooked. Boy, was she right! I have basically always been on the search for the next thing to help me lose weight, and was getting tired of the options I was finding. In the past I have mostly done workout DVDs (cardio kick boxing), they’re fun and a pretty good workout, but they get so repetitive! That’s not the case at all at The Studio (MDR)! The trainers keep you on your toes by mixing up the moves and the music, I’m always excited (and slightly afraid) to see what we are going to do next.

I’ve also been a member of a gym and done classes that involve weights, but after a month or so I started to feel like I was bulking up, so back to my DVDs or the elliptical I would go. The Studio (MDR) has made me excited about fitness again, and I’m so glad I took that first class!

Mary Miller was the trainer for my first session, and I couldn’t believe how much time she spent with me, helping to correct my form and modifying the moves that I just couldn’t get as a newbie. It made me feel like she really cared about teaching this class. I was also very impressed by the way that she would call out to each person by name with words of encouragement or tips.

At the end of the class, Colleen asked me what I thought, and while the language was not appropriate for this blog, it was something to the effect of “holy cow!” I left that class determined to keep coming back in order to build my strength and be able to master those moves. And I came back the very next day! Granted, I could barely move for a week after 2 days straight, but I felt AMAZING!! I don’t think I had ever been that sore from a workout before, but almost two months later, I rarely ever need to modify a move and like to think I can keep up pretty well.

At The Studio (MDR), I can feel myself getting stronger and more toned, but definitely not bulky. I try to go to class at least 3 times a week and I take advantage of all of the healthy recipes and tips from the blog, so thanks to The Studio (MDR) I will be wedding ready for my big day in no time!

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Lisa's Likes For Warmer Weather--Part II

Last week, I filled you in on the warmer weather must-haves that protect my skin. This week, my Lisa's Likes post is all about staying in style.

First things first.

(1) My favorite bronzer: I cannot live without Tarte's mineral powder bronzer. Besides it's whisper light texture and mineral based ingredients, it comes in a cool faux-croc case which I love pulling out of my purse.

(2) Marc Jacob sunglasses - These Petite Vintage-Inspired sunglasses by Marc Jacobs bring out my inner Jackie-O and help me avoid crows feet at the same time. There is nothing chic about sun damage; I am sure Jackie would concur.

Next up is what we help you look and feel your best in at The Studio (MDR): your bathing suit.

(3) Bikini: This citrus L-space bikini reminds me of my rock-star infused past but the citrus color gives it a current twist. You will be seeing me in this suit for summer.

(4) Sun hat: San Diego Hat Company's reversible Missoni inspired sunset brings a little bit of fashion down to the beach. I love that it's reversible too. It goes with everything.

(5) Beach Accessories: I keep my Roxy roll-up towel in my Roxy tote when I head to the beach.  This bag has a cooler on the bottom so it's as functional as it is stylish!  I like to bring healthy snacks to the beach, and this Roxy cooler bag has room for my water, celery, carrot sticks and lunch.  Fabulous!

What do you think? Have you tried any of these yourself? I love hearing from you. Let me know what your warm weather must haves are! You can tell me through this blog or better yet, come in and tell me after you've taken a class at The Studio (MDR).

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Lisa's Likes For Warmer Weather

With spring break and summer just around the corner, I thought you could use some help getting beach ready so this edition of Lisa's Likes will be a "two-parter." There are just so many warm weather products out there that I love.

First up, my must haves to protect my skin:

(1) La Roche Posay Anthelios Sunscreen:  I run around like a mad woman in the morning, so a fast absorbing sunscreen is key to my schedule. I love La Roche Posay Anthelios, not only because it's fast absorbing, but also because it has a matte finish which doesn't make me look shiny. It's also water resistant so I can even wear it during a workout. It's fragrance-free, too, which is great for sensitive skin like mine.

(2) Supergoop! SPF 30 sunscreen Swipes for your beach bag: I am a big fan of sunscreen but it can get really messy to apply in the car. I love Supergoop tan towels because they involve no mess and allow me to keep one hand on the wheel.

(3) Nia 24: Perhaps there is such a thing as youth in a bottle!  Nia 24's concentrated, lightweight formula fades my brown spots and has significantly improved my skin's brightness, clarity and tone.

Lisa's Likes For Body

(4) Staying hydrated: I cannot live without fresh coconut water from whole foods. The water replenishes the electrolytes I lose during my work outs and drinking right out of the coconuts makes me feel like I am on vacation.

(5) Rodial Brazilian Tan Light: Infused with avocado, coconut & caramel, the Rodial Brazilian Tan Light is a light weight gel like tanning formula with a long lasting glow.

So there you have it, my Lisa's Likes for this week. Check back next week for more of my warm weather faves!

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Superfood Saturday--Say Hi to Açaí

It's time for Superfood Saturday's on The Studio (MDR) blog. And today, we want you to say hi to Açaí. Also known as nature’s energy fruit, the Açaí berry is one of the most nutritious foods in the world.

Açaí, harvested in the rainforests of Brazil, is chock full of antioxidants, amino acids and essential fatty acids, making the tiny berry a weight loss and anti-aging superfood1!

While it may be difficult to find Açaí berries in your local supermarket, Açaí juice is widely available.  There is also, a new product featuring the unsweetened pulp of Açaí which provides many benefits including2:

  • A remarkable concentration of antioxidants that help combat premature aging, with 10 times more antioxidants than red grapes and 10 to 30 times the anthocyanins of red wine.
  • A synergy of monounsaturated (healthy) fats, dietary fiber and phytosterols to help promote cardiovascular and digestive health.
  • An almost perfect essential amino acid complex in conjunction with valuable trace minerals, vital to proper muscle contraction and regeneration.

So, if you’re feeling a little sluggish, or if you just need an extra boost of energy, this recipe for an Açaí smoothie is a fantastic choice to consume before or after your workout at The Studio (MDR).

Açaí Berry Smoothie 

1 Unsweetened Pure Açaí Berry Smoothie Pack 8 oz Almond Milk 1 Banana 1 Scoop Whey Protein Powder 1 Tablespoon Flax Seed Oil

Blend all ingredients until smooth and enjoy!

Is there a superfood you'd love to read more about? Let us know, we are looking for future "Superfood Saturday" ideas.

  1. http://www.webmd.com/diet/guide/Açaí -berries-and-Açaí -berry-juice-what-are-the-health-benefits
  2. http://www.oprah.com/health/Açaí -Dr-Perricones-No-1-Superfood

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The Pains Of Labor--BABYlates Is Here To Help!

This is a guest post from Jessi Piha of The Studio MDR. Could there be anything more painful than labor? I don't think so (not even Spoon or Scrambled Eggs on the Megaformer). But I do want to share that we all have pains in life. As the teacher of a prenatal workout class called BABYlates, I want to tell mamas & mamas-to-be that I'm having some pains myself---blogging pains that is.

The challenge with blogging and technology in general (for a girl like me who teaches movement for a living) is sitting still for a moment: just me, my thoughts and the computer. But I am doing this because my mission is to help more moms continue their exercise routines well into, and after, their pregnancies.

Okay,  I've accepted the challenge and pain of blogging solely out of the inspiration I receive from moms who come in and workout in my classes every Saturday. No matter how uncomfortable they may feel with the changes they are experiencing, whether it's tightening hips or an increase of fatigue, they accept their mission and I accept mine too. Life, after all, is about team work.

So, I'm an instructor seeking able-bodied, moms and or moms-to-be to come play on Team BABYlates.  At this very second we both have one thing in common---our backs are achy from sitting and we need to get up and get moving, breathe, re-charge. I've seen what you can do, I've been to some pregnancy fitness classes, " belly undercover" so to speak, and some of you Mamas-to-be even put this "fit" girl to shame.

Let me clarify a few things about our future together. Standing on your head at 36 weeks pregnant is not for everyone and I can assure you of one thing, you won't be doing that in the BABYlates class. What I'm saying is that I'm in tune with my clients' bodies and their capability with respect for safety! I feel your pain ladies, it's all relative--labor, blogging, inner thigh exercises. As a mother, your exercise routine doesn't have to be like that. Some of you are about to take on the most important job in the world; some of you already have this honor.

Motherhood is much bigger than blogging my mommies. So, why don't we both shut down the computer, throw on some Toesox, take an hour off and meet at The Studio (MDR). You can thank me later when you slip right back in to your pre-baby body skinny jeans!  See you in class girls!! It's time for this butt to get off the couch and go sweat, too.

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Sugar Free Saturday's: A Guest Post And Recipe From Amy Samuelson

My name is Amy M. Samuelson and I have spent the last twenty-five years in the entertainment business as a writer/producer. Visit my website at www.amysamuelson.com. I am a former New Yorker living in Santa Monica, California. I also maintain the blog, Amy Does It Sugar-Free.

Last year I had an epiphany regarding “good health” and how to attain it by reducing salt and sugar in my diet and kicking up my exercise regimen. I also began attending (MDR) Total Body classes at The Studio (MDR) run by Lisa Hirsch. The changes that have occurred to my body, mind and spirit are phenomenal.

  • My sense of self and humor returned quickly.  I had forgotten how much fun life offered.
  • Blogging on Amydoesitsugar-free also means I will not sugarcoat this lifestyle. My entries are written with a sense of humor and truthfulness. Truth being the bully everyone pretends to like. I will chronicle my successes, missteps and adventures.
  • Sugar-free living is limited to 15 grams of sugar a day. Sugar exists in almost everything we eat… Read labels carefully.

Here’s my recipe for “Mellow Yellow” scallops, served with asparagus and brown rice. This entire dish is low in sugar and salt.

I buy frozen scallops at Trader Joe’s in a 12 ounce package. I defrost them in the bag. Once defrosted, I take them out of bag, squeeze out their juices, and place them on top of 2 paper towels. I cover them with more paper towels in order to remove excess liquid. It is important that the scallops are as dry as possible before “woking” them.

Next, I place a generous amount of saffron into my wok along with chopped garlic, olive oil, 2 Tbs of white wine (optional), lemon thyme, ginger and the juice of one lemon. I heat my mixture until it is hot and place my scallops into the wok. They are done in approximately 5 to 6 minutes. You never want to overcook your scallops. They will become tough. Fault on the side of under versus over. Garnish them with lemon zest.

Asparagus is an amazing and health friendly vegetable. It is high in vitamins and the folic acid it contains is good for depression. Also, it has a cleansing proponent that flushes your system. Of course, we have all noticed that our pee smells funny after eating asparagus.  Well, it turns out to be a good thing. Who knew? 

There are many ways to cook asparagus.  I prefer sautéing my asparagus in lemon, garlic and oil. Sometimes I add a little butter with fresh pepper. It is ready to serve in less than five minutes.

As for the brown rice, I buy mine at Trader Joe’s in microwaveable packages. However you choose to cook it is fine--just remember that brown rice is always preferable over white rice in this regimen.

Putting it all together. After everything is cooked, place a scoop of brown rice on a plate, dice up your asparagus and place them around your brown rice and put  the scallops on top of the rice. Voila, the result is a picture-perfect entrée that looks as beautiful as it tastes.

This entire meal took me less than 20 minutes to prepare and serve.  Sometimes, I make a quick green salad with whatever vegetables I have in the refrigerator with a simple olive oil and lemon dressing.  Again in wishing you good health, I remind you that lemon is a color you can smell.

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