5 reasons to volunteer at the NYC Marathon

Come late summer and early fall, marathon fever will hit New York City. But by then, it will be too late. If you’re not running this year, I have a marvelous suggestion on how you can be get in on the action: volunteer.

There are still a handful of volunteer spots left at the 2019 NYC Marathon. Volunteer opportunities fill up very quickly so I am sure these spaces won’t be available for long.

Finish, NYC Marathon
Finish, NYC Marathon

I volunteered in 2018. I registered the day after I crossed the 2017 marathon finish line. I’ve always loved the NYC marathon and I knew I wouldn’t be running it two years in a row. So the day after I crossed the finish line, I signed up to hand out water at Mile 25. Then I waited 364 days for my big chance. Marathon Day brings out the best in NYC. Plus there are too many street closings to do much else but enjoy the marathon, so you might as well get in on it.

Volunteer opportunities are diverse: you can hand out water or gatorade, you can put medals on the finishers, if you have a medical license you can provide real-time support on the course, you can hand out bibs at the expo or you can help with logistics for tens of thousands of runners at the start.

Need a little more convincing?

Here are 5 reasons to volunteer at the NYC Marathon:

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Do you need to take Physique 57’s pregnancy class? (if you’re pregnant)

Hi friends! Last week I shared a scorecard of my favorite classes to take while pregnant. One of the classes that ranked the highest was Physique 57. Physique is so welcoming to pregnant ladies they even offer a special workshop called “Fit for Pregnancy” that teaches you all of the modifications you need for their class. The workshop itself is a great workout.

But you may be asking yourself: Do I need this workshop?


above, a recent picture of me just being me

So let’s get down to biznas. I took the 90-minute Fit For Pregnancy workshop and I’m here to help you answer that question.

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My fav fitness classes while pregnant in NYC

Well well, look what the cat dragged in (me). I haven’t posted in ages, which means I’ve not shared some big personal news: I’m pregnant. I’m due (as if it’s a very strict appointment) at the end of June.

running at 24 weeks in Savannah
running at 24 weeks in Savannah

In the last 30 weeks or so, I’ve tried a bunch of different workout classes to varying degrees of success. Working out while pregnant is different for everyone. I’m happy to share what’s worked for me (and what hasn’t) in the event it makes it a little easier for someone else to get out there. I also know I’m lucky to be able to work out consistently during pregnancy. I know not everyone feels up to it – or is advised to – and I’m not taking it for granted.

Nicole’s Pregnancy Fitness Class Scorecard

StudioFor pre-natal/post-natal only?Welcoming to pregnant ladies?Sweaty?The Scene Modify much?(1= no modifying; 10= lots of modifying)Mini Review
Physique57 NoYes
They love modifying for pregnant ladies and have special bolsters
NoFit uptown ladies (at pretty much all locations)3
The whole abs section (~10 minutes) needs to be modified but the instructors are happy to help; the class sticks to the same format each time so once you sort modifications, you're golden
I love this class for it's reliability. I know being pregnant won't get in the way of my ability to work out here.
Fhitting Room NoYes
They have a promo video welcoming pregnant ladies to come
YesUpscale bootcamp, co-ed, tough workout, positive reinforcement7
Each class is different so the level of modification varies class to class
Since the workout changes class to class, it's hard to know when I walk into the studio if I'll be able to join the class in the routines. I have all but stopped going because I got tired of doing my own thing.
DanceBody NoDidn’t acknowledge I was pregnantYesYounger crowd (both locations in NYC are downtown)2
I skip the pushups and replace with jumping jacks; this also assumes you’re a pregnant lady who is okay with jumping!
I love this class while pregnant. So far I'm lucky and jumping has been fine for me. This class makes me straight up smile.
ProNatal FitnessYesYesYesHeld in a Tribeca community center basement; mom-to-bes of varying fitness levels1This was a good workout but it wasn't for me. The studio is right next to an indoor pool and it was very humid and there were no windows. The tone was a bit medicinal rather than fun.
PreNatal Yoga Center YesYesNoChill, hippy UWS mom-to-bes1It's a slow flow, but I think all pregnant yoga probably is. Community is a factor here, which is nice for making friends. Though I haven't like, personally made friends here (yet?).
Love Child YogaYesYesNoMother earth meets the West Village in a damp basement1I wanted to like this so much. It's located on Horatio Street and looks straight up precious, but I found myself struggling to stay engaged in the flows.
Fit Pregnancy ClubYesYesKindaHip, Soho pregnant ladies (who will probably wear crop tops the second they are out of labor)1This is a solid workout catered to pregnant ladies. Think: weights, cardio and toning in a trendy studio. They make being pregnant cool.

If you’ve been pregnant, what were your favorite workouts in NY?

Actually Cool Dance Classes in NYC

Real talk: I used to think dance classes were for people who couldn’t handle “real” workout classes like Barry’s Bootcamp.  Dance classes didn’t seem hardcore enough for me. Then one of two things happened. Either I got over myself or these classes got harder, probably both. Look around any of these dance classes and you see (mostly) women who are way stronger than me.

Today’s fitness market is packed, and it shouldn’t surprise you that New York City has many dance-focused offerings. They range far beyond traditional options like Zumba or Ballet. Some of the classes use dance to complement strength workouts within one session. Here’s a rundown of the dance classes currently trending in New York.

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We took a Barry’s Bootcamp class in Bergen, Norway

Want to make Barry’s Bootcamp harder? Take it in Norwegian.

Matt and I went to Norway and Sweden for 10 days of hiking and exploring. Our AirBnB in Bergen, Norway was around the corner from Barry’s Bootcamp. It’s just called “Barry’s” in Norway. I wonder if the word “bootcamp” doesn’t translate.

barrys norway

After a week of challenging hikes, Barry’s wasn’t exactly what we needed, but I couldn’t pass up the chance to take a New York favorite while abroad. Also, fun fact: Despite the fact that EVERYTHING is more expensive in Norway (compared to the US), Barry’s is cheaper!

barrys norway

We visited on a weekend, and Barry’s in Norway follows the same calendar as in the US, so it was a Full Body workout (the schedule varies by day of the week). My short vacation in Norway doesn’t make me an expert on it’s culture, but it’s hard to escape the view that Norwegians are fit. Here read this study about the culture of fitness in Scandinavia. Even in the US the Barry’s regular is a self-selecting crowd and the average participant is in pretty solid shape. I steeled myself for a tough workout and that’s what we got.

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