My Favorite Things: July

favorite-things-julyTime for another roundup of favorites! These monthly posts seem to just get longer and longer … I may have to turn them into a bi-monthly feature. Thoughts?

Favorite Products/Services

Bombas Socks

bombas-socksIs there anything better than that new-sock feeling?? Maybe it’s just because my socks get so worn down and disgusting, but putting on a fresh, never-worn pair of socks is heavenly to me. Bombas sent me a bunch recently and I love them–so comfy! And the best part is that for every pair of socks purchased, Bombas donates a pair. Since socks are the number-one requested item at homeless shelters, this is pretty awesome. I love companies that give back!

My FitBit Flex

I go through phases with this thing. I was super into it when I first bought it then quickly lost interest; used it for the month while hosting a DietBet so other betters could follow me then ditched it. It’s an on-again-off-again relationship. Recently though, two of my friends got FitBits and we’ve been competing against each other in daily step challenges and it’s totally motivated me to wear mine again. Nothing like a little friendly competition to pique my interest. I did a full review of the flex HERE if you’re interested (bottom line: it’s great for tracking steps but just know that it doesn’t do much beyond that before buying it—it’s a pedometer).

Two-Tone Firmoo Glasses 

firmoo-glasses-blue-blockerThis is the second pair of glasses Firmoo has graciously gifted me, and I love these even more than the first! The two-tone frames are a fun change, and I was really excited to see that Firmoo now offers the option to get blue light-blocking lenses. As you can probably guess from the blue tint in the pictures, I went for those! By blocking out blue light from TV, computer and cell phone screens at night, studies have shown that you’ll get a better night’s sleep. (Blue light can cause melatonin suppression in our bodies.) You can check out Firmoo’s new arrivals or 15%-off frames — all their frames are super affordable and you just customize them with your prescription.


breather-boston-reviewI already mentioned Breather on the blog (it’s where I shot a ton of recent workout tutorials), but it’s worth repeating that you can get an hour free with the code PUMPIRON! Available in NYC, San Fran, Boston, Montreal & Ottawa, Breather rooms can be rented right from your smartphone for meetings, getting work done (they all have Wi-Fi), relaxing (most have yoga mats) or even photoshoots. As someone who works from home and often needs to get away from the apartment to be fully productive, I’ll definitely be using Breather again. (Pictures are from their location on Boylston Street). breather-boylstonbreather-boylston-review

Henry Bendel Make Up Case

henry-bendlMy friends at Popsugar sent me their Must Have box as a little gift, and in it was this Henry Bendel make up/toiletry case. I don’t use a ton of make up so it’s the perfect size and the metal mouth allows the bag to stand open wide. I love it!

New Discover Weekly Feature on Spotify

Spotify now sends its users a playlist of personalized songs each Monday. I’m assuming they use some algorithm that takes into account songs you currently have in playlists and have listened to. The past two weeks, I’ve loved my Discover playlist and have found a ton of new music for classes and everyday listening. Thanks for making my life easier, Spotify!

THESE LEGGINGS !! crazy-girl-leggings

These Onzie leggings need to be in my closet yesterday. I’m obsessed! And the best part is they’re called Crazy Girl Leggings (haha).

Favorite Eats

Grilling Out by the Pool


Can’t. Stop. Eating. Fish. Tacos. And they’re even better on the grill!

Pesto Scramble from Fog Island

pesto-scramble-fog-islandOne of my favorite breakfast spots on Nantucket, we always hit up Fog Island when we’re visiting. The pesto scramble with avocado is my go-to (it’s the ultimate hangover cure, I swear). :)

Pescatarian Blue Apron Deliveries

corn-chowder-blue-apronYou might remember that the first time I tried Blue Apron, I forgot to set my dietary preferences and got a ton of meat I normally wouldn’t eat. With all the weekend weddings and travel, I haven’t been grocery shopping much this month, so I decided it’d be a perfect time to try Blue Apron again, this time making sure to request vegetarian and fish dishes only. I did it this week and last week and everything was delicious! My only complaint is that when you go the vegetarian route, you get a ton of pasta dishes. I’m not anti-pasta by any means but it leaves me feeling so weighed down and I think I’ve eaten more noodles in the past two weeks than I have in the past year. squid-ink-shrimp-blue-apron cod-miso-blue-apron

Carbo-loading aside, here were the meals I received:

blue-apron-egg-sauteblue-apron-soba-noodlesFor now I’m back on the grocery store train, but I’m sure I’ll revisit BA at some point in the fall to switch things up again. :)

Matt’s Munchies Fruit Snacks

matts-munchies-fruit-snacksJoe grabbed these by chance at DeLuca’s the other day and they are so tasty! New favorite snack.

Favorite Workouts

The Ramp.

megaformer-rampAs if a workout on the megaformer isn’t hard enough, there’s now a ramp to elevate the back end of the machine so that gravity works against you. There’s one at Btone for the instructors to use and clients can book a private class if they want to ramp it up as well. I did my first class on it the other week and it makes work on the machine at the back SO much harder (I just had it on level 1–I honestly can’t even imagine having it any higher for ab work). I think a private class is the way to go with this thing because if the routine isn’t designed with the ramp in mind, it can make transitions clunky and other exercises easy or just awkward with positioning. So in other words, don’t have ramp FOMO during regular group classes. :)

Bar Method in Wellesley

After I wrote this blog post about popular workouts I’ve never tried, I was inspired to start crossing them off the list. Bar Method’s Wellesley location is on ClassPass so I went after subbing at the Btone location across the street (so convenient). The studio was gorgeous and I really liked that the instructor (Jen) came over and corrected my form several times. I don’t do barre often so I always appreciate the little adjustments! I’ll probably never be a hardcore 4x/week barre person, but it’s a great way to switch things up once in a while.

Gilt City Cyc Event

This is the second event I’ve been fortunate enough to get invited to at Cyc and the ride was just as good as the first! One of their NYC instructors, Steph, was in town to teach it and she rocked. Afterwards, there was a quick ab workout at David Barton’s and samples of Freshii, Blue Print juices and Pinkberry. Let’s be real, I went for the free Pinkberry. (Kidding … or am I?)

These Superset Pyramid Workouts: Bodyweight & Kettlebell

Kettlebell Superset Pyramid Workout -- this is a fun one! The structure makes the time fly by!I’ve been loving this workout structure lately — talk about a boredom-beater!

Opening Ride at Handle Bar’s New Cambridge Studio

handle-bar-harvard-squareI used to spin frequently at the Handle Bar‘s first studio back when I lived in Southie so it was fun to have an excuse to ride with them again! The new Harvard Square studio is gorgeous and the class on Sunday was great (Elise was the instructor).

Box & Bell at BFX

I had heard good things about Box & Bell and finally tried it this Monday–I loved it! The class was divided into 6-minute kettlebell AMRAPs and shorter rounds of bag work; you go back and forth between them three times (or at least we did in the class I took–not sure if the structure is the same every time). I really like that the instructor (Ike) took a few moments to go over form with the bag work and explain the basics of boxing (what the numbers mean, how you should stand, how your feet should pivot as you throw different punches). I’ve only done two other boxing classes (one at George Foreman’s & one at Peter Welch’s) and neither gave much explanation for newbies so I felt like a total spaz. Now I get it! And it made it a lot more fun and effective.

Favorite Reads & Watches

First off, I finished Yes Please, which I mentioned I was about halfway through in last month’s favorites post. There were a few chapters where I really enjoyed reading Amy’s insight on life, but all in all, I was expecting a funny book and was a little disappointed in that department.

Missoula: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town

I read this for a book club I’m in and couldn’t put it down. Written by John Krakauer (same guy who wrote Into Thin Air and Into the Wild), it recounts true events that happened in the college town of Missoula, Montana and explores the reasons why rape is so infrequently reported, and when it is, why it’s so hard to convict the accused of it. I found the book pretty eye-opening, and while some parts are hard to read, it’s definitely worth reading.

Articles/Blog Posts

  • Optimistic People All Have One Thing in Common: They’re Always Late via Elite Daily | This made me laugh because the two most optimistic, perpetually positive people I know (my boyfriend and one of my college BFFs) could literally not arrive on time to something to save their lives. I’ll keep this article in mind next time I almost miss a flight because Joe is putting gel in his hair … :)


  • Locked Up Abroad | This show gives me major anxiety but I love it. Joe and I were so pumped when new seasons got released to Netflix! One of the episodes is about Henry Hill (the guy Goodfellas was based on), and while he wasn’t technically locked up “abroad,” I still loved it—scandalous historical stuff like that is my favorite! Skip episode 1 in season 6 (From Hollywood to Hell) though—oh my lord this guy is painful. You can actually tell that he’s lying about his story to make himself look cool. You know what, I take it back—watch that episode. It’s almost funny how much of a tool the guy is haha.
  • Downloaded | This is a documentary on the rise and fall of Napster, and even though I was more of a Limewire girl back in the day (ha!), I really enjoyed watching this. And I had no idea that one of the original Napster guys was also a major player in starting Spotify (and Facebook). Bet he’s really poor…


  • Whine About ItGO TO THIS TUMBLR IMMEDIATELY AND WATCH EVERY SINGLE VIDEO. Guys. These videos are hilarious. I discovered them and then accomplished approximately 0 things the rest of the day because I couldn’t stop watching and giggling to myself. The one below is amazing and so is the one about why kids are the worst.
  • Andy Sutton, Pro Hockey Player, on Lagree Fitness | Any time I try to get my guy friends into a Btone class, I get the same skeptical look and response: “Yeah but isn’t that just for chicks?” No!! Joe has done it before and loves it, and he’s always saying how he thinks it’d be a great workout for hockey players, so I got super excited when I saw this Andy Sutton interview.

Speaking of bro-ing out on the megaformer, for the entire month of August if you refer a new male client to Btone you get a free class for yourself. Hop on it, Btoners!

Favorite Moments

Long Weekend on Nantucket


My wine glass was the only one prepared for this picture…

Joe and I had a wedding on Nantucket and decided to turn it into a long Thurs-Mon weekend. It was SO much fun! The wedding was incredible and we had a couple extra days to just relax at the beach and hit up the brewery. Being from Martha’s Vineyard, of course my heart is there, but man do I love that other island, too. :)

Dress I wore to that wedding is by Indah (check it out HERE).

Hitting 100K Followers on Bloglovin’

UM WHAT?!?! 100,000?! Is that even a real number?! I am so, so very grateful for all of you who follow this blog. Whether you’re a regular commenter or just skim a post here and there, you are the reason I’m able to do this as a full-time job. And wow—talk about a milestone. Hitting even a thousand followers on any network is exciting as a blogger, so one hundred thousand is blowing my mind. I think it’s time to go all Madonna on you and officially start referring to myself as Pumps. 😉 (I’m kidding)

A Boston Harbor Island Wedding Weekend

boston-skyline-nighttimeThe second wedding of the month was on Thompson Island (one of the Boston Harbor islands) and it was an amazing weekend. Friday night was a cocktail party at Pier 6 and then Saturday a boat took everyone out to the island for the ceremony and reception. Sunday morning rounded out the festivities with a brunch at the Boston Harbor Hotel pavilion. I was FEELIN’ my outfit for Friday night, so snapped a few (literally like two hundred … I’m embarrassing) shameless selfies: outfit-friday

WEARING | pants from Anthropologie // top from Urban Outfitters // shoes are Vince Camuto

And I loved my dress for the wedding as well: thompson-island-wedding-2 thompson-island-wedding

WEARING | Dress is by Keepsake (check it out HERE) // Shoes are by Mia Limited Edition (old but I found a sz 9 HERE and a sz 6 HERE if you’re dying to own them)

Foot Reflexology & Bodywork Appointment

For Joe’s birthday last month, I got him the very self-serving gift of a couples’ foot reflexology and deep tissue massage (hehe…). We had our appointment last Friday and it was 90 minutes of amazingness. The place we went to is right around the corner from our apartment, and while it definitely has a hole-in-the-wall feel, I thought the service was great. It was a painfully good reminder that my calves are absurdly tight.

Favorite Deals & Sales

Favorite Old Posts

I’m stealing this idea from Julie! I love that she started including some old flashback posts in her Things I’m Loving Friday posts, so I’m copin’ her style, yo. :)

Alright, that’s it! I’m off to the Vineyard until Wednesday and couldn’t be more excited. I haven’t spent this long of a stretch at home in years so even though it’s only five days, I plan on treating it like a full-on summer vacation. My list of things I want to do is so long–so many places I miss eating at; different beaches I want to bum it on; yoga studios I want to try–it’s going to be great. Hope you all are equally as excited for your own weekend!

What’s on your highlight reel from July?


Most of the pictures in these posts are from my Instagram if you want to follow along and see the highlight reel in real time. :)

BONUS FAVORITE | I’m not typically a celebrity-crush girl but … charlie-hunnam

Disclosure: This post isn’t sponsored in any way, however there are a few affiliate links throughout it. Thanks for your support!

3 Exercises I’m Loving Lately: Upper Body/Core

3 New Exercises to TryI thought this would be a fun regular feature on the blog, even though I’m sure you guys can probably guess what my current favorite exercises are because I’ll put them in Every. Single. Workout. I post for a month straight (anyone remember my serious windshield wiper phase? Haha). I do this with everything—I find something I like and then do it/eat it/play it nonstop.

Maybe it’s just because I teach group fitness and am constantly looking for ways to switch things up in my classes, but I get SO excited when I’m in a class or doing a video and an exercise I’m unfamiliar with pops up. They’re not necessarily revolutionary; more often than not it’s just a twist on a traditional exercise or a slight variation that makes it harder/different.

Since the Kohl’s #MakeYourMove campaign is all about staying healthy doing things you enjoy, I thought it’d be the perfect time to start regularly featuring new (to me) exercises and variations that I’m currently loving. Look for them to pop up in workout tutorials on Pumps & Iron (you may have spotted one already in last week’s power wheel workout) and also try adding them into your own workouts and classes.

Biceps Circle Curls

Bicep Circle Curls

TARGETS BICEPS (I know, duh)

We did these in Barry’s Bootcamp the other week (Christina’s class rocks) as part of a bicep sequence and I loved them in combination with traditional curls and hammer curls (try doing all three in sequence—super effective way to target the muscle!). You really feel like you’re using every inch and angle of your biceps by adding in the circular motion with the curl.


Start standing holding a weight in each hand, palms facing front. Make sure you have a soft bend in your knees and low abs are engaged with your tailbone tucked so that you have a supportive base. From this starting position, curl the weights up and over to the right in a circular shape. At the top of the contraction, weights will be up at your chest (12 o’clock if we’re thinking of the motion as hands on a clock. From there, slowly lower the weights down and over the left, ending back in your starting position. Every time your hands reach this point (6 o’clock), you’ll switch directions so that the next circular curl is up and over to the left, down and over to the right. Forearms should stay parallel to each other as you do this; elbows stay locked in tight by your bottom ribs.

*A consideration when choosing your weights: Bicep curls with the elbows braced by our sides are generally easier than those done with the elbows lifted in front of your body. Keep this in mind and maybe choose a set of weights a few pounds heavier than you’d normally use for bicep curls.

Cobra Walking Planks

Cobra Walking Planks


This is a megaformer-inspired move that I’ve probably made you do if you’ve taken my Btone class recently. And it’s just as challenging off the machine! You can use a power wheel (pictured below) if you or your gym has one (I think this is the most challenging because you have to balance on that thin wheel), but it also works with a pair of sliders or even a dishtowel (pictured above).

Cobra Walking Planks with a Power Wheel


Start in a plank position with your feet strapped into a power wheel or on sliders/a dishtowel. From this starting position, you’re going to roll/slide backward, maintaining your plank position and bending your elbows (think of a triceps dip: arms stay in close to your sides) so that you slowly lower down to a forearm plank. From here, do a walking plank, pressing up one hand at a time to straight arms so that you’re back in high plank and read to start your next rep. With the walking plank, try to alternate your lead hand every time so that you’re not always pressing up with your dominant arm.

If you’re a beginner, do this from your knees (place knees on a padded towel or sliders.

Twisted Push Ups with (or without) a Top Crunch

Twisted Push Ups with a Top Crunch


This is a great push up modification to work your obliques! 


From the waist up, you’ll be in a push up position: hands on the ground a little wider than shoulder width apart, chest square to the ground. From the waist down, you’ll be in a side plank with the left foot stacked on top of the right. It’s important that the twist is from the waist; you want equal weight in both hands. From here, you’ll do a push up, engaging that right oblique to keep your body in a straight line as you lower the chest towards the ground and then press up, straightening your arms. At the top, crunch your top left knee in towards the left shoulder; set it back straight on top of the right foot; and go down into your next twisted push up. Beginners: modify by doing this from your knees (still twist the low body, left knee stacked on top of right knee) and omit the top crunch. Twisted Push Ups

WEARING: Nike leggings, Nike muscle tank, Nike sports bra & Nike sneakers all c/o Kohl’s

Have you tried any of these exercises before? With what exercises are you currently #MakingYourMove?


This post is sponsored by FitFluential on behalf of Kohl’s.

Stupid-Easy Slow Cooker Shredded Mexican Chicken

Stupid-Easy Slow Cooker Shredded Mexican Chicken - so juicy and flavorful! Perfect for meal preppingI mentioned this recipe in passing in another post, but it deserves its own as well in case anyone missed it. In general, I don’t like meat, but even I will find myself standing over the crock pot eating this chicken by the forkful because it’s so juicy and flavorful.

This “recipe” really just involves you dumping three ingredients into a slow cooker and then getting on with your day. It’s a food prepper’s dream! I’ll make a big batch at the start of the week and then have it on hand for taco salads, Mexican-flavored quinoa bowls, spicy breakfast skillets—the list goes on. Stupid-Easy Slow Cooker Shredded Mexican Chicken - so juicy and flavorful! Perfect for meal prepping

Stupid-Easy Slow Cooker Shredded Mexican Chicken

Stupid-Easy Slow Cooker Shredded Mexican Chicken


  • 4-6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, depending on how much meat you want (4-6 halves or 2-3 full breasts, to avoid confusion)
  • 1 can salsa of your choice (any salsa you want! I’ve used everything from El Paso to pineapple salsa made fresh on site at Whole Foods)
  • 1 packet taco seasoning (or 1 ½ - 2 tbsp of your own – here’s my favorite DIY recipe)


  1. Place everything in the crock pot and mix it up good so that the chicken is coated in the salsa/spices. I usually pat the chicken breasts down with a paper towel before putting them in the slow cooker because meat slime totally grosses me out.
  2. Cook on high for 5-6 hours.
  3. Use a fork to shred the chicken (it should do so easily).

Stupid-Easy Slow Cooker Shredded Mexican Chicken - so juicy and flavorful! Perfect for meal preppingPin this puppy now and try out the recipe next time you meal prep for the week!