Who Inspires You?

Last night I had the privilege of listening to Kathrine Switzer. For those of you who might not recognize her name, she was the first woman to run the Boston Marathon. Kathrine was amazing to listen to because she was unbelievably inspiring in such a matter of fact kind of way.

She told us the story of how she became the first woman to run the Boston Marathon. But she said it really all started with her Father. He was the first person to really inspire her to reach further and strive for the best. Her father taught her that to be successful was simple but not without a lot of effort. That all she needed to do was put in the work and to “show up” and she would be ahead of everyone else.

Kathrine had another very influential person, the volunteer running coach at Syracuse. Although they didn’t have women’s sports yet, they let her run with the cross country team. Over time they developed a very close friendship and once she proved to him that the beliefs he had about women and their capability wrong, he became her biggest supporter. He believed in her, pushed her and was by her side when she ran the marathon.

kshandskneesIt was amazing to listen to Kathrine recount the moment in time that has now become so famous and changed women’s running and sports forever. From that moment on she has worked hard to change sports to include more women’s events. And she did!

In addition to being incredibly inspired, I thought Kathrine made a very important point. There will always be a few people who really inspire you. They will push you to do and be better and reach for what you think is unachievable. You never know who these people will be but they will touch your life in immeasurable ways. And that we all have the opportunity to be that for someone else.

kathrineswitzer

How to get started on your fitness journey

I had recently asked a group of women what their biggest fitness obstacle was and the overwhelming answer was “how to get started”. For some people, exercise is just a part of their life, a piece of their daily routine. But for many others, it’s hard to even know where to start. Deciding to start a fitness routine shouldn’t be scary but getting started is often the hardest part.

Here are 9 tips on how to begin your fitness journey:

  1. Set realistic goals: Make SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely). Think about your overall goal and break it down into actionable pieces. Many people start a fitness routine to lose weight. But focus on exercising 4 days a week, with 2 days being strength training and 2 days being cardio. Plan out which days you’ll workout and what you’ll do on those days. Then commit to 30 days of this plan and see where you are at the end. Most likely, you’ll lose weight or inches and gain the benefits of more energy and feeling great.
  2. Track your fitness progress: What gets measured gets managed right? So make sure you’re keeping track of measurable points so you can see your progress. This is more than just the number on the scale. Take your measurements and update them every few weeks. You may lose inches but not pounds, but it’s still progress! Or track how long you can run for or how long into a workout until you need a break. Seeing these numbers change will show you are making progress and your hard work is paying off!
  3. Celebrate your success everyday: Your fitness journey won’t always be easy, it’s challenging to change your lifestyle. It takes commitment, motivation and planning to make fitness a regular part of your lifestyle. But the benefits are totally worth it! Celebrate every day, no matter how small. Did you get in a workout when you totally didn’t feel like it? Maybe you tried something new or used a heavier weight. Or maybe you were able to make it 5 more minutes in your workout. Recognize these moments and congratulate yourself! You’re making a change and working towards your goal, each step towards that goal needs to be celebrated
  4. Get the right gear: You need to feel good and be prepared with the right clothes for your workout. If your clothes don’t fit right you could be distracted by having to constantly pull up your pants during your activity, trip over long pants, jiggle in places you don’t want to, chafing or feel uncomfortable jumping around without the proper support for the girls. All of these things could ruin your experience so make sure you invest in yourself and wear activewear meant for your activity. Plus having a new outfit will motivate you to want to show it off!
  5. Know your why: You need to have a good, strong reason as to why you want to make this change to your lifestyle and routine. There will be challenging times and you’ll want to give up, but you need something to keep you focused on your goals. Why do you want to get healthy? What’s driving you? It has to be something more than “I want to get healthy”. Put something real behind it like: I want to be able to run around with my kids, I want to participate in the activities with my friends, I want to be able to get up a flight of stairs and not feel winded, I want to run a 5K without stopping etc. Figure out your why and let it push you through those difficult times when you need motivation and inspiration.img_4980-2
  6. No workout is off limits: You may want to do a workout but think you have to be at a certain level or that you can’t do a specific workout. Get out of your comfort zone and try it! There are always ways to modify an exercise to make it doable. So even if it intimidates you but looks like something you’d like to do, you should! Maybe you have to take extra breaks to get through it, so what, you’re still doing the workout and it’s all part of your journey. Modifying the exercises will help you develop the strength and stamina so that over time you will get better and eventually might not need to modify.
  7. Don’t wait: It’s a common feeling to think I’ll start my fitness routine after I’ve lost some weight or once I feel more comfortable in my body. But exercise has an amazing benefit…it gives you confidence. It helps show you that you’re capable of amazing things and helps you feel good in your own body. So don’t wait until you feel better about yourself, start your fitness journey and use the body you have right now to get healthy.
  8. Make it fun: Find something that you enjoy! No one is going to keep doing something if they hate it or had a negative experience. It’s important to find a class or workout that you like. Try different things and you’ll find workouts that are enjoyable. Maybe you’re not the traditional workout type so get outside for a hike, sign up for a dance class or join a sports league. There’s many different ways exercise, so make sure to find something you enjoy so that you’ll want to keep doing it.
  9. Have a support system: Whether its working with a trainer or recruiting a friend to be an accountability partner, you need a support system. There will be times you’re tired or uninspired but your support team will help push you. Knowing there are other people counting on you will motivate to keep going and striving to achieve your goal!

 

Your Favorite Meals Made Healthy

Last week I asked the Women Who Define Brave group what meal or food they couldn’t give up. I loved hearing from you and learning more about everyone’s tastes. There were a lot of answers that were similar so I thought it might be fun to create healthy versions of the items we all love.

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  1. French Fries: Make your own healthy “French Fries” at home. Instead of deep frying and using lots of oil and salt, you can make a delicious version of fries at home in your oven. Baked fries really are amazing! You get the flavor and feel of french fries without the grease and guilt. These leave me feeling good and are a great way to incorporate your favorite side so you don’t feel like you’re giving anything up. Here are two recipes I found for great tasting baked fries:
    • https://www.fitnessmagazine.com/recipes/dinner/crunchy-baked-french-fries/
    • http://dailyburn.com/life/recipes/healthy-homemade-french-fries-recipes/
  2. Ice Cream: There are a few ways to indulge your craving for Ice Cream without upsetting your waistline. If you’re out at an ice cream shop choosing sugar free or getting a kiddie size version are good options. But now there healthy brands to choose from in the grocery store!
    • http://www.eatthis.com/high-protein-ice-cream
  3. Pizza: This is definitely one of my foods that’s hard for me to live without. I love pizza and crave it often. I’ve learned to make healthier versions so I can still enjoy it because I know I couldn’t eliminate it from my life! I use flatbread for the crust or if I’m feeling ambitious I’ll make my own cauliflower crust. I think you can now buy cauliflower crusts at some stores like a Trader Joe’s or Whole Foods. But sometimes I need the carbs and the flatbread is perfect. Here are some ideas to revamping your pizza:
    • https://greatist.com/health/make-healthier-pizza

September’s 5 Day Clean Eating Challenge

Life gets busy and things get pushed aside. It’s easy to say you want to eat clean but following through can be a different story. I don’t know about you, but I definitely fall into that weekly cycle of starting the week eating healthy and clean, but I tend to let it all go by the weekend.

Eating clean always makes me feel amazing. I have more energy for my day. I tend to sleep better and fall asleep more easily. There’s no after meal bloat. My workouts are better. It’s amazing what fueling your body correctly can feel like!

I’m ready to put in a focused week to break my usual weekly cycle. I know it all comes down to being prepared and planning ahead. So I’ve mapped out 5 days of delicious meals to keep us satisfied and full. Knowing what to eat, having it prepared ahead of time and enjoying the food will help ensure our success!

The challenge is starting next week, Monday 9/18! Are you going to join me? I’m so excited about doing this together. I need to get refocused on my health and fitness goals, especially after celebrating my Birthday all week!

takingthechallenge

Make sure you’re a member of our Women Who Define Brave Facebook group. I posted the menu, recipes and grocery list in there. I kept some favorite items but I added some new meals that I’m excited to try. I’ll be curious to hear your feedback!

Let’s encourage and support each other through the challenge. Share your meals, workouts or tips for a chance to win prizes from us! Get ready to feel AWESOME!

Here’s the menu:

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
Breakfast 2 Eggs, whole grain waffle, berries Overnight Oats 2 Eggs, whole grain waffle, berries Overnight Oats 2 Eggs, whole grain waffle, berries
Snack Power Shake Veggies & Hummus Power Shake Veggies & Hummus Power Shake
Lunch Niçoise Salad Slow cooker salsa Verde w/ brown rice and green beans Spicy Shrimp Salmon, snap peas & quinoa Avocado Turkey Burger salad
Snack Veggies & Hummus Apple w Almond butter Veggies & Hummus Apple w Almond butter Veggies & Hummus
Dinner Slow cooker salsa Verde w/ brown rice and green beans Spicy Shrimp Salmon, snap peas & quinoa Avocado Turkey Burger & side salad Flat bread pizza

Get the the grocery list and recipes in our Women Who Define Brave group. Let’s all do this together!

September is for Goal Setting

My sister and I were talking the other day about how September seems to mark another time during the year to think really think about your goals and get refocused. Maybe we’ve just all been trained to always think of this “Back to School” time of year as a time to reset and get fresh start. It’s a great time to reflect and think about what we want and how we’re going to do it.

As Labor Day was coming to an end, I was trying to be even more conscious about this and really think about what my goals are and what I want to accomplish for the rest of the year. I needed to decide my top priorities and what I was going to focus on. I also needed to think about how I was going to accomplish them.

Even though I think about all of this every year I don’t always follow through. So this time, I want to buckle down and tackle those few items that are really important to me. I want to finish out the year strong and complete those goals I was really committed to accomplishing.

Do you feel the same way? Are there a few goals that you really want to accomplish by the end of the year? Will you join me? Let’s do this together!

Here are some tips to setting yourself up for success:

goalsetting

3 Tips to staying having a happy and healthy Labor Day

The summer always seems to fly by so quickly! I can’t believe Labor Day is this weekend and the end of Summer is already here. I know for me, September always feels like a time to get back to routine and get refocused. And although you may be looking at this weekend as your “last hurrah” before you get focused, you can indulge and enjoy without completely going crazy.

Here are 3 easy tips to follow while you enjoy your Labor Day weekend:

  1. Load up on Veggies: Snack on raw veggies or have a salad first. This will help fill you up and keep you feeling full longer.
  2. Drink plenty of water: Especially if you’re spending time outside in the heat. And if you’re drinking alcohol, mixing in water will help you stay hydrated and keep you from going overboard.
  3. Be mindful but enjoy: If there’s some item that you really love, go enjoy it, but do so in moderation. Being mindful yet still indulging will help you feel satisfied and not feel deprived.

Looking for some recipe ideas so you can create your own healthy item for the BBQ? Check out this link for 4 great recipes that are sure to be a hit at any party: http://greatideas.people.com/2015/08/24/hungry-girl-labor-day-healthy-recipes/

 

Why plus size workout options suck?

I sat down with Coach Tulin last week to discuss a burning question: Why aren’t there great options for workout clothes in plus sizes? Part of the reason is the misconception about plus size women. I’ve been told many times that plus size women don’t workout or don’t want to shop in stores. This is so frustrating to me since I know that’s not true. Health is not a size, many women are healthy and active and fall into a variety of sizes. And I know all women want cute, attractive and functional workout gear.
I loved hearing Tulin’s thoughts on what she thinks about these stereotypes and what can be done to prove them wrong. Learn how you can help change these stereotypes and start getting better workout options:

Q and A with Katie K

I’m so thrilled with the response to our Kickstarter Campaign! Thank you to those who’ve already participated! However, I’ve also been receiving a lot of the same questions, so I thought it would be best to explain a little more. I want to make sure we are clear about what a Kickstarter is and our reasons for doing one. I put together a list of questions I keep hearing and wanted to answer them one by one for you:

1.     What is a Kickstarter?

a.     It is a way for a company to raise funds for a specific goal through direct support.

2.     What does my pledge go towards?

a.     Your pledge will help us produce our next collection, the Galaxy Collection.

3.     Why is Katie K Active doing a Kickstarter?

a.     To grow Katie K Active. The Kickstarter will help us keep up with demand and also enable us to expand our product offering. We want to add new styles, more colors and have more products available more often for you.

4.     What do backers get?

a.     Backers not only support the company but they also get to choose from a variety of unique rewards created exclusively for this event.

5.     Why should I support the Katie K Active Kickstarter?

a.     Many backers rally around a project or company they love and want to support. Take pride in knowing you’re helping a small company grow and keep making products you love.

6.     What happens if Katie K Active doesn’t reach their goal?

a.     If we don’t reach our funding goal you won’t be charged, but you also won’t receive your rewards. This is why we ask that if you love Katie K Active to please share our Kickstarter to help us meet our goal.

7.     How can I support the Katie K Active Kickstarter?

a.     Click the link to go to the Katie K Active Kickstarter page. Review the different reward options and click on your favorite to pledge your support and receive that reward. https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/468071266/inclusive-premium-activewear-by-katie-k-active

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Kickstarter Bonus Reward Now Activated!

Kickstarter Bonus Reward Now Activated!

Our first week is complete and we’re already off to a great start! Thank you so much to those who’ve supported our Kickstarter. We are definitely feeling the love!

But…we need to keep going! We have a big goal and I know we can get there. 

I was asked a few times about our rewards and what all is included at each level. Well, it was suggested that in addition to all the items, we should give a 40% OFF Coupon for the Galaxy Collection to everyone who participates in the Kickstarter.

So…

If you participate in our Kickstarter, you will receive a 40% OFF coupon as a bonus reward. So no matter what level you pledge, you will get a 40% OFF coupon to use on your next purchase of Katie K Active! 

There’s a preview below of the new T-Shirts and prints for the Galaxy Collection. I’m in love with everything that’s coming in this collection! Check out all the rewards we made specifically for this event. Pick what you want and get your special bonus!

Supplies are limited!

Galaxy Collection Preview

Take 40% OFF the Limited Edition Palm Print Leggings and Capris!

Normally $84, but for the Kickstarter, you can grab them for $50! Add a Tee or Tank for a complete outfit. The more you bundle together, the better the deal and more you save! Supplies are limited. This 40% offer will go fast, make sure you check it out today!

Click here to Support The Katie K Active Kickstarter!

We truly appreciate your interest in our products and want to give back to you!  We hope our products have helped you feel confident during your workouts.

Kickstarter Rewards! Tees and Tanks too!

We are so overwhelmed and grateful for all the support we’ve received so far for our Kickstarter campaign! Women are really loving the new Limited Edition Palm Print Leggings and Capris. At 40% OFF these are a great deal!

But have you seen our new Tops? These are an awesome way to show your love for Katie K Active. You could even combine them with a capri or legging to create a super cute outfit!

As a special thank you for your participation in our Kickstarter Campaign, we want to thank you with a gift. Check out all the Rewards available specifically for this event.

Supplies are limited so be sure to grab your favorite pieces today!

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Every dollar counts! There are many ways to support our Kickstarter Campaign. Check out all the various rewards, I’m sure you’re going to find something you love! Load up on Capris or Leggings at 40% OFF or grab a fun top! Supplies are going fast!

Click here to Support The Katie K Active Kickstarter!

We truly appreciate your interest in our products and want to give back to you!  We hope our products have helped you feel confident during your workouts.

Our Kickstarter is LIVE!

We are so excited to be launching our Kickstarter campaign! The new color options of the Limited Edition Palm Print Leggings and Capris are awesome! I know you’re going to be just as excited as we are about these. There are 3 options to choose from as well as whether or not you want a Legging or Capri.

As a special thank you for your participation in our Kickstarter Campaign, we want to thank you with a gift. Check out all the Limited Edition items we made specifically for this event.

The Kickstarter is live!

Get your Limited Edition Palm Print Capris or Leggings today at 40% OFF!

Supplies are limited!

 Get in on the fun with 40% OFF Leggings and Capris!

Add a Tee or Tank for a complete outfit. Supplies are limited.

This 40% offer will go fast, make sure you check it out today!

Click here to Support The Katie K Active Kickstarter!

We truly appreciate your interest in our products and want to give back to you!  We hope our products have helped you feel confident during your workouts.

About this project

What is Katie K Active?

Katie K Active was created by former Philly fitness trainer Katie Kozloff after her clients complained about the lack of size inclusive activewear on the market.

Katie wanted to be inclusive and therefore designed Katie K Active to fit sizes Small to 3x. She realizes fitness comes in all shapes and saw the demand for providing clothing that would not only fit but fashionable and functional for all women. Using their double fit technology to assure a great fit across all sizes, Katie K Active has become known for their exceptional fit. Most fitness brands fit on a standard fit model size Small and just make the pattern larger as the sizes increase. Katie chose to fit a model size Medium and 2X to get the most accurate fit. Katie knows you can’t just grade up through the size range and it’s paid off. Customers love the fit of Katie K Active, no matter their size.

Katie K Active Capris on Season 17 of The Biggest Loser
Katie K Active Capris on Season 17 of The Biggest Loser

 As seen in

Why are we the brand for you?

  • Sizes Small to 3X – every style is offered in every color in all sizes Activewear that stays in place – stop pulling up your pants after every exercise
  • Discrete Side Pocket – carry your phone, keys and cash so you can be handsfree
  • Exceptional Fit – with our double fit technology, we can assure you our clothing will fit you perfectly
  • Luxurious Performance Fabrics – semi compression technical fabrics that wick away sweat, keeping you cool
  • Anti Chafe Seams – Flat lock seams are smooth and won’t rub or irritate your skin
  • Sliming and Flattering Style – Seaming details offer flattering look
  • Keen Attention to Detail – each style made to reflect the most popular trends, merging style with function
  • Durable fabrics – won’t fade, shrink, fall apart or lose shape in the wash

We’re listening to you!

Knowing that all women, regardless of size want the same cute, fashionable and functional activewear options, Katie decided to tackle another issue in the active market with a focus on larger sizes: Prints and Bright Colors. Her recent Propel Collection featuring vibrant orange, pink and navy color blocks sold out just 48 hours after airing on ABC”s “Good Morning America.

Good Morning America
Good Morning America

Why a Kickstarter Campaign?

Katie K Active has been rapidly growing and is becoming a favorite among women. A high point last year was being selected to outfit the women on Season 17 of the Biggest Loser. And this past January we were featured on Good Morning America, selling out within 48 hours. In addition to those big moments, we’ve gone international with retailers carrying Katie K Active all over the world. Katie K Active has also made it’s way to over 75 stores in the U.S. All of this is amazing and shows just how loved Katie K Active is and how important it is to provide women sizes small to 3X with performance activewear.

Katie decided to run with this momentum and move production to NYC from overseas to support our national economy. But in order to keep growing and being able to provide women with exceptional performance activewear, we need your support. This Kickstarter will help us expand our business so we can add new styles and offer more options. By supporting us, you’re supporting an independent brand of clothing that is helping women of all sizes feel confident while they lead an active life. Together we can redefine what it means to be healthy and fit.

It has been a part of Katie’s mission from the start to make her clothing accessible to women of all sizes worldwide but also keeping the prices reasonable. We don’t use big PR dollars to get our message and apparel to the masses but rely your word of mouth and all the women that share our #DefineBrave message. We appreciate your support!

Enough from us, let’s hear what women like you had to say!

What do you get?

Katie decided to make a special print just for this Kickstarter Campaign. We brought back a fan favorite, the Palm Print. After polling our fans, we got to the final three new Print colors: Black and White, Blue and Camo. This Limited Edition Print is only being offered for our Kickstarter, so grab yours today before supplies run out!

Think of the rewards as pre-purchashing product. Or in the case of the $5, supporting our mission (thank you!). After a successful campaign completion, you will be sent a link to input information such as size, color and style.

Thank You for your interest in our activewear. No matter what your contribution level, all the rewards come with our wholehearted gratitude. Truly, we couldn’t do this without you, so T H A N K Y O U.

            

Risks and challenges

We’ve done everything we can to make the production process as turn-key as possible once the Kickstarter campaign is complete. We’ve tested and perfected the fabric, the pattern, and the design of the leggings. We’ve secured professional, reputable vendors including our Brooklyn NY factory which has been in business for over 20 years. Unlike most Kickstarter campaigns, we have completed the most difficult work ahead of time. This is why we are able to ship your rewards in under 90 days.

Because we are working with multiple vendors, there is a risk for scheduling conflicts that could impact our timeline. We will address this risk with open and transparent communication – both with our vendors and our backers. We promise to continuously work to ensure the best customer experience possible. We understand that by backing our project you are placing your trust in us, and we will do everything in our power to exceed your expectations.

7 Tips for a healthy BBQ season

With the summer in full swing and tomorrow being July 4th, it’s officially BBQ season! BBQ’s aren’t always known for having the healthiest options but you can still indulge without upsetting your health and fitness goals. Don’t get thrown by these events and let them ruin all your hard work. Follow these tips below to enjoy a healthy BBQ season:

  1. 19598835_1199195293520288_7428371873630387785_nContribute a healthy option: By bringing something you know is good for you, you will know there is at least one healthy option for you eat.
  2. Fill up on veggies: Load up on the salad and veggies or snack on the veggie tray instead of chips. Skip the bun and have your protein over a salad.
  3. Make a healthier version of a favorite: Use whole wheat pasta in your pasta salad. Lighten up dips by using Greek yogurt instead of sour cream.
  4. Practice your normal healthy eating habits: Don’t skip meals or save calories for the party. That sets you up to overeat.
  5. Get in some exercise: Make sure to keep up your exercise routine on the day of the event. You’ll feel great that you got your body moving and will be less likely to go crazy. Do a 20-30 minute HIIT workout to get your body burning all day long.
  6. Stay Hydrated: It’s easy to drink anything other than water but make sure you reach for water throughout the day. Sugary drinks and alcohol can add lots of calories without any nutritional value. They can also tend to make you want to eat more.
  7. Be mindful of your portions: It’s easy to overload your plate with all the delicious options, but don’t go too crazy. Enjoy your favorite items, but be mindful of the portions. This way you’ll be able to indulge without overdoing it.