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Spring Back to Real Life at MedSpring Urgent Care

22 April 2015

As I've mentioned a little before, as a working parent I guard my calendar like a mama cub. I am always trying to gain control over my work schedule, my personal time and my time with my family since I cannot make time slow down like I'd like it to a little these days. We sometimes race through Monday - Friday to get to the weekend and then try to perfect our recipe for 72ish hours of perfectly balanced work, play, fun, relaxing and productive time. I am thankful that these days, time with my family is what centers and recharges me.

Of course, the best laid plans can still fail. We battle work popping up, weather not cooperating, and, most unfortunately, life and exposure to new environments making us sick. Before Heidi, I was never sick, to the point that I didn't have a general doctor or know the inside of an urgent care. That changed for me the second she started day school. Her antibodies were great, and she carried every germ home to me with a gummy smile on her cherub face. If I ever thought I didn't have time to be sick before having a baby, I had no idea the anxiety and inconvenience of trying to find a doctor or give myself time to recover when PTO is gone to maternity leave, wiggle hours for appointments in my work day are spent on the pediatrician and I am trying to squeeze every hour outside of work enjoying time with the babe. Finding a babysitter so your husband can drive you to a clinic to wait with the masses for a strep test was rock bottom on my list of ways to spend a Sunday, and it happened more than once.

When MedSpring Urgent Care introduced themselves to me about their upcoming openings in Dallas, I had this perspective to know how valuable their concept was going to be to our family and the community. Not only does MedSpring provide urgent care from 9:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m. seven days a week, they also offer primary care, occupational health, X-rays and even vaccinations. Many of my excuses for getting regular check ups, flu shots and other preventative health options was due to a lack of availability outside of work hours, and with the MedSpring team I think I'll be healthy and ready for a decent fight against the pre-school germs! Both the Knox/Henderson and new Upper Greenville locations are close to my work and home, so I am going to make myself go in more routinely than I've been seeing the doctor so far to stay on top of things. The space itself is so welcoming, though, it might be more like them kicking me out!

The mucho gorgeous MedSpring shining a welcoming light on Upper Greenville in Dallas.

You'll first notice the difference at MedSpring when you walk in to the homey waiting area that features drink machines and a refrigerator of snacks right by the front door.


There's plenty of space in the waiting area without it at all resembling the rows of chairs I'm used to seeing at urgent clinics. Heidi made a bee line for the children-friendly part of the space the moment we walked in and got to work at the kids table and getting in some most coveted screen time with the TV. 


I really appreciate that the kids area is sanitized between patients with new crayons so we don't leave with more germs!
While the waiting area is welcoming, MedSpring makes every effort to ensure you're not there long. The welcome team's approach is to check you in and then move you to a suite as soon as possible where you can settle in and finish any paperwork before seeing a medical professional.

When we were looking around, the word "suite" really caught my ear since it's not something you expect to hear often in the medical world. The president of MedSpring's experience with some of the top names in the hotel industry has really inspired the company to make hospitality the focus of their work. Exam rooms are replaced with suites featuring ample space, sofas for waiting family members and a television in every room with a working remote and even a channel listing to feel as at home as possible while you wait. They even have free wifi if you want to pass the time cruising your phone or on your laptop.


If we can get Fixer Upper on a loop in here, that would be perf, thank you.

There's also snack service to hungry patients to feel as comfortable as possible no matter what time of circumstances you're visiting under. I've been known to pop trail mix like it's candy, especially the ones that have candy.


I certainly don't look forward to needing to see a doctor, but with MedSpring available in my neighborhood I'm thankful to know there are friendly faces nearby that can make it easy for to me to feel better instead of my usual habit of avoiding the doctor due to thinking it is going to be its own awful experience.

Anyone like me just want some TV, a snack and a kind grown up to check them out and tell them how to get better when feeling yucky? MedSpring is the package deal, and I am so glad we got the pre-tour so we know who to see when we need them!

A big thank you to MedSpring for inviting Heidi and I to meet your friendly team and sponsoring Pancakes and Beet Juice. I'm happy to pass on your kindness to by donating your sponsorship to CitySquare Community Clinic, where the 60,000 residents of Dallas who are battling poverty or homelessness can also receive friendly health care. 

Bring On the Summer and Join Me in the Fly Plus Challenge!

13 April 2015

Well folks, I can’t believe the feeling of an 80 degree day  in Dallas has already hit my face. It’s the best feeling in the world, and I’ll even keep the sentiment for the thermostat numbers that keep trucking higher over the summer months. Last summer was when we really started to get a groove as a family, even with an infant. This summer our family life is great and Heidi is a thriving and adventurous little girl. We are going to make summer a verb.

With that said, I’m already thinking bathing suits, shorts and the immediate afterthought of exercise! Last year I had a strong, confident and fun summer thanks to getting the party started with the spring FlyBarreChallenge. The FlyBarre Challenge changed my body for the summer and it changed my outlook on what I was capable of in life and how some hard work is always worth it – physically and elsewhere.

It’s that time of year again and I am feeling the buzz, but why keep things the same when it’s called a challenge? I am so excited that Flywheel has rolled out the new Fly Plus Challenge – three FlyBarre classes and three Flywheel classes a week for six weeks – to get the most enthusiastic (and possibly insane!) kids ready for summer.

It seems now that you can’t look at anything in the fitness world without seeing the world challenge, which makes sense I suppose when that is what all workouts should feel like. There’s three reasons, though, why I think the FlyBarre Challenge and it’s new siblings, the Flywheel and Fly Plus Challenges, are the most effective whether you’re completely new to exercise or ready to take your current program up a notch.

Consistency

Before the FlyBarre Challenge last year, I was exercising 3-4 times a week. The challenge of four FlyBarre classes a week plus my interest in adding one cardio session on most weeks changed my body. My metabolic rate was consistently higher, my mind was fresh almost every day from a great workout and my muscles were lean.  I am a huge believer that discipline begets discipline, and it’s of little surprise to me that during last year’s FlyBarre Challenge I also decided to drop sugar, alcohol, gluten and dairy from my diet for the last month. Conquering something you thought you couldn’t do is catching, and I saw the effects all over my life.

Over the course of the challenge, I got on the mat on days that before I would have told you I was too tired, sore or busy to work out. I showed myself that, on days like that, it’s still possible and worth it. I’ve stuck with exercise four to five days a week ever since, because after you’ve shown yourself you can do it, why stop? My body has continued to show the effects of long term consistency, and I am really excited to take things up a notch with a six workouts a week program in the Fly Plus Challenge.

FlyBarre Challenge before and after
I guess now is about a good time to get vulnies and show my FlyBarre Challenge before and after photos!
Hello shoulders and goodbye, thighs!

FlyBarre Challenge before and after
I really love this photo to see the difference in my postural muscles. FlyBarre is great for desk girls!
Strengthening my upper back really helped with neck and shoulder pain and makes me look taller.

Cross Training
Yes, I am a human being and if I am making the time to exercise would like my clothes to fit. I’m also a working mom and active member in the community who benefits from a strong body and mind full of energy to take on the day. I’ve learned a cross trained body is the answer for me, with strong muscle and a healthy heart and cardiovascular system so I can pick up Heidi without hurting myself, volunteer and work events at my job without fatigue or sprint through Target for the latest designer collab launch.

From being a Fly kid for the past few years, I know it is sometimes a split camp. Flywheelers would try FlyBarre but are afraid of losing time on the bike and FlyBarre babes want to add cardio but cherish their time on the mat. The Fly Plus Challenge is the perfect welcome wagon if you’ve been on one team and feel ready to see the benefits of a cross trained workout without abandoning your current program. There is a reason why Flywheel Sports houses barre and cycle classes – together these two are the one-two punch to a fully conditioned body. If you’re a wheel kid, you will love what strengthening your accessory muscles does to your power score! (I saw a huge change in my ride during the challenge last year). If you are a barre fly, adding this cardio is going to melt any layer between you and those lean muscles!

Community

The biggest key to success at Flywheel and FlyBarre though, is the people that take on your goals with you and care about getting you there. Over the past year, I’ve done some traveling around other fitness studios in the name of changing it up. Other classes have been effective, but I’ve never forged relationships with trainers and classmates like I have at Flywheel and FlyBarre. Meanwhile, every time I’ve come back to my Flywheel studios it’s been a happy homecoming with instructors and other members excited to see me. This, to me, is what group fitness is all about. Add the teamwork approach to the other community aspects of the challenges like a kick-off party, group coach instructor, form workshops and weekly meal plans from a registered nutritionist, and its easy to see why the results come in from this program.

I know over the course of the challenge my coach and instructors will encourage me, answer my questions and even make 6:00 a.m. wake up calls. Adding more workouts to a full plate is a stretch, but many hands make light work and it doesn’t feel like a chore when you’re with some of your best friends.

The Fly kids with Heidi who was really once that small. 


Friends first, Fly kids second!


Speaking of community, who is with me?! There's a few more days to sign up if you want to try it! I love workout buddies, especially in those early morning and Noon classes, so let me know if you're going for it and we can swap numbers to keep things accountable and fun. The kickoff parties start this weekend, so get your name on the list this week to get started. You can get more information on the challenge here or email dallas@flywheelsports.com or the plano@ counterpart. YOSO(AY) - You Only Summer Once (A Year) - and I am excited to feel ready, energetic and lean at the end of this Fly Plus Challenge!



Snap into Spring with New Snap Kitchen Menu Items

08 April 2015


January is supposed to be our big start to getting healthy, but I find it to be a losing battle. Not six weeks into the year and we're met with Valentine's candy, beers for St. Patrick's Day and Easter eggs filled with calories, stacked like hurdles in the race to swimsuit season.

Daylight Savings Time and the sun staying longer is like turning on the lights and seeing everything in full view. There's whispers of pool parties and forecasts calling for shorts weather. I start remembering the phrase that "abs are made in the kitchen" and [finally] get interested in adding some healthy eating to the routine. 

For me, it takes just a few wins to get me motivated and a few more to make a habit, which is why Snap Kitchen's quick and delicious locally prepared meals are a huge asset to me. Before I'm maybe ready to be making and planning healthy meals, I'm eating them!

Snap Kitchen's Spinach and Goat Cheese salad. I love throwing it all in a big bowl to enjoy!

There's a few other options for prepared meals in Dallas, but there are many reasons why Snap Kitchen is the only one for me, including

1. Locally sourced ingredients, from the fresh goat cheese in my beloved Spinach and Goat Cheese Salad to the lamb sourced in East Texas for one of my favorite new spring menu items, the African inspired Grass-Fed Lamb Kafta.

2. Variety! Crunchy snacks, crisp juices, fresh salads and hearty turkey meatloaf are enough options to keep me popping into Snap Kitchen for a healthy variation of whatever I'm craving. The heavy rice in sushi is replaced with quinoa in one of my favorite snacks, the Miso Salmon Maki Rolls with gluten free soy sauce. It's my favorite salty snack for workout days that's nourishing and filling instead of empty calories.

Vegan Lemongrass Tofu with the Miso Salmon Maki Rolls is a filling and healthy lunch!

3. Very gluten free friendly! As someone with an allergy to gluten, I more than understand that you do not have to eat gluten free to be healthy or vice versa. I do think it is extremely accommodating and worthwhile for a business like Snap Kitchen to offer really tasty gluten free, vegan and dairy free food options and easily label them. It makes my experience shopping in the store easy and fun every time! Even the pasta in the Housemade Italian Beef Sausage and Spirals and the insanely delectable Gluten Free Brownies (keep them in the fridge for a special warm weather treat!) are completely allergy friendly.

Prepping for a healthy spring with Snap Kitchen's local registered dietitian, Daniel Magoon.
Side note: I was wearing shorts! :o)

If you're looking to eat a little more fresh, more local and allergen and/or calorie conscious, Snap Kitchen is my favorite ways to get started without sacrificing the care and ingredients you would have at home. Try their snacks, breakfasts and lunches to stay on track for your healthy dinner at home or go all the way with their juice and 21 Day Commit programs. It seems like we went from heavy jackets to shorts in a snap, and I am trusting the professionals to get me feeling ready!

A special thanks to Snap Kitchen for inviting me to the store and offering me meals for my family and I to enjoy! I was excited to partner with a brand I already enjoy for this post and all opinions are my own. 

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