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.
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!
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.
Hot off the press: There is a brand new rock climbing gym in the Upper West Side. Until now, if you wanted to try your luck at bouldering you had to commute to a decidedly cooler, younger part of the city (Long Island City or Gowanus).
I brought my friend Caroline and Central Rock was kind enough to host us, provide us shoes and give us a lesson. We needed it.
Just three blocks from Columbus Circle, the gym is right next to a SoulCycle in a part of the Upper West Side that is adding new, trendy, commerce every day. After checking in upstairs and getting fitted for climbing sneakers (which are meant to be uncomfortably snug), we headed down to the gym space.
“Feel free to lose your shit!” bellows the instructor over a throaty Decemberist song.
My classmates scream, grunt and shake in response.
“The Class” by Taryn Toomey is a sweaty body weight workout in Tribeca right next to the Four Seasons. The vibe is upscale hipster and the studio looks like someone at Goop designed it. But the beautiful people in the class move as if they’ve caught the Holy Spirit in a mega church.
Matt and I spent three nights in Queenstown, New Zealand during our honeymoon. We loved every second of this restaurant-packed, lakefront little city.
Queenstown is adventure capital of the world. You can famously bungy jump at the first commercial bungy site (Matt did!), mountain bike down steep trails, go white water rafting and find countless other thrills.
But mostly, we wanted to hike.
We spent hours googling trails but in retrospect, the good stuff was obvious. I’m sure you could find other day hikes in the area, but in my humble opinion (and the opinion of all the Queenstown locals we polled) these three experiences are must-dos for those spending just a few days near Lake Wakatipu.
This hike takes about two hours (roundtrip). It starts right outside of the center of Queenstown, and you can absolutely walk there. (I don’t think there is parking closer to the trail head anyway). The hike is steep, but short and the trail is packed dirt and well marked. You’re rewarded with incredible views of Lake Wakatipu below.