Double Vision. One Focus.

 

 

“On 4/3/15 I woke up like the picture on the left. I’d had a stroke in my sleep which caused a palsy in the 3rd nerve of my brain, causing my right eye to swing out. I saw two of everything and could only see straight if I closed one eye. It’s taken over a year and a half, 3 surgeries, an ocean of tears, and the desperate need to regain my life to get ME back. I took the pic on the right just after taking my new SoulCycle instructor photos — hence the incredible and very fake lashes. I never imagined having the courage to share the ‘before’ pic, but think it’s important to recognize and celebrate the journey, no matter how painful. Unlike so many stories, this one has a happy ending, one that will hopefully inspire determination and hope!”

-Emma Zaks, Facebook post, November 18, 2016

This is the story of Emma Zaks, a bubbly, energetic, and very popular SoulCycle instructor. Those who ride with Emma watched this healthy and fit 33-year old woman go through an unimaginable two-year journey — becoming increasingly ill with debilitating symptoms, both gastro-intestinal and neurological, that ultimately resulted in a stroke.

On and off the SoulCycle schedule at first, Emma began subbing out her classes for other instructors. Then followed a long absence. She would later return to teach — a patch on one eye and face swollen from the steroids doctors had prescribed for devastating symptoms no one really could explain. An autoimmune disease of some sort was the rumor. As is her nature, Emma remained her upbeat self through it all, or so it appeared, never letting her riders see the pain and fear going on inside.

Luckily, this story has a happy ending. After her illness was finally diagnosed and treated, Emma started posting little bits of her journey on Facebook. So moved and overwhelmed by her strength and bravery, we asked her to tell us what happened from beginning to end. This is her story in her own words…. and her Facebook posts.
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X-Trainers: HIIT It With Style

 

 

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CLOCKWISE TOP LEFT: ASICS FUZEX RUSHNEW BALANCE VAZEE AGILITY V2ADIDAS PURE BOOST XUNDER ARMOUR CHARGED 2.0NIKE FREE RN DISTANCEPUMA FIERCE LOW LACE 

 
High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), CrossFit, and Boot Camps have become some of the most popular workouts, providing maximal results in minimal time, and proven to offer continual calorie and fat burning benefits even after the workout is done. Based on the concept of interval training, periods of highly strenuous activity are alternated with easier recovery periods. The cardiovascular benefits are the heart rate is kept high as the body stays in motion, rotating exercises and targeting different muscle groups throughout the workout. 

Classes at favorite studios like Barry’s Bootcamp, Orange Theory and others we reviewed in the 31 Days of Fitness, combine treadmill and rowing intervals with explosive plyometric and power moves, multi-directional floorwork, and weight bearing exercises. They require a lightweight shoe that offers the agility and support of a training shoe with the cushioning and traction of a running shoe.

Here are 6 versatile hybrids, for men and women, we think hit the mark for all your training needs — ready to take on any workout with style!

CLOCKWISE TOP LEFT: ASICS FUZEX RUSH $100. For both men and women, the new fuzeX Rush is a lightweight and flexible performance running shoe. It features Asic’s fuzeGEL™ technology, providing responsive cushioning from heel to toe, for any type of impact, on a range of training and running surfaces.
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WOW! Working Out With Stephanie Ruhle

 
DUKING IT OUT AT SHADOWBOX WITH MSNBC ANCHOR, STEPHANIE RUHLE

 

PHOTOGRAPHS BY MAGGIE MANN

Stephanie Ruhle is the eponymous host of “MSNBC Live with Stephanie Ruhle,” which airs every weekday morning at 9 am. If you watch MSNBC regularly you will also see this busy newswoman pop up on your TV screens at other points during the day — especially now, when political developments are non-stop and there is never a dull moment in our nation’s news.

Previously a banker at Deutsche Bank and Credit Suisse, Stephanie got her start in business television as an anchor and managing editor for Bloomberg Television. There she co-hosted “Bloomberg GO,” Bloomberg’s flagship morning show. Among many other industry leaders, she regularly interviewed such financial titans as former Goldman Sachs President, Gary Cohn, now White House Director of the National Economic Council; Wall Street mogul, Wilbur Ross, now Commerce Secretary; famed “corporate raider” and Wall Street activist, Carl Icahn, now special adviser to the president on regulatory overhaul; and billionaire real estate tycoon, Donald Trump, now the 45th President of the United States.

Like many of those she has covered, Stephanie has shifted from business into political news in what has to be one of the most exciting times to be a reporter. It requires a lot physical and mental stamina. “It comes with a great responsibility,” she says, and you have to be “fitter than ever.” Given the time demands of her job; role as a wife and mother of three kids; and active involvement in women’s leadership development, having founded the Corporate Investment Bank Women’s Network and serving on the board of trustees for Girls Inc., how does Stephanie stay in such obviously good shape?
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Red Hot & Sporty

 

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Red hot for Valentine’s Day, it’s our favorite sporty classics. The perfect gift for a special someone or your own wish list, it’s always hotter in red!

LEFT COLUMN: SMITH SEQUEL SNOW HELMET $180. A red hot Smith favorite for your snowy Valentine, the Sequel combines the simple style of their classic helmet with a new ultra-light hybrid shell construction. It also features 18 adjustable regulator vents, a Boa fit system, and Snapfit SL ear pads for extra comfort and better fit. FJALLRAVEN FOLDSACK NO.1 BACKPACK $110. Another sporty classic in Valentine red is this rugged but stylish rucksack. Made with heavy duty canvas and leather details, it also has a laptop sleeve with padded bottom, large zippered front pocket, and padded adjustable shoulder straps. NORMA KAMALI MIO STUDDED SWIMSUIT $615. The super sexy Norma Kamali one piece is a timeless favorite and probably the most flattering swimsuit ever. Yes, it’s extravagant, but in red and silver studded, that’s Valentine’s swimsuit sure to make a splash!

CENTER COLUMN: BALENCIAGA OVERSIZED QUILTED SHELL JACKET $3250. The puffer goes haute couture with this straight-from-the-runway Balenciaga quilted down jacket. It’s warm and functional too with its detachable hood and scarf.  FREECITY FEATHERWEIGHT SWEATPANTS $125. Super cozy with a slim silhouette, these Freecity sweats are always a favorite. Incredibly soft, they get better with each wash and in this hot color you’ll never want to take them off. ADIDAS DRAGON OG $79. For 2017, adidas has reissued a fresh take on a 70’s track & field classic. The Dragon OG features the traditional athletic aesthetic and slim profile with a retro gum rubber outsole for durable traction underfoot.
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Outside Inside

 
CLOCKWISE TOP LEFT: HOLY STOKES! A REAL LIFE HAPPENING; 281 DAYS: ROWING THE PACIFIC SOLO; VIEW FROM A BLUE MOON; VALHALLA; PARADISE WAITS; UNTETHERED

 

For all you outdoor adrenaline junkies, just launched on Amazon Video is Outside TV Features, a new subscription video on-demand service featuring a full line-up of multi-sport action and adventure films. From the worlds of skateboarding, surfing, snowboarding, motocross, biking, climbing, slacklining and more, Outside TV Features brings the outdoors indoors. Showcased are the world’s most accomplished athletes in unique and ground breaking films celebrated through compelling stories, dramatic locations, and stunning cinematography.

Some of the notable films include: “View From a Blue Moon”, a surf film featuring 2016 WSL surf champion John John Florence, and his rise from surf grom to surf champion, growing up on the North Shore of Oahu.

“We are Blood”, a modern day skate adventure featuring Paul Rodriguez and other top skateboarders as they travel the globe pushing the limits of what’s possible on four wheels.
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Black X White

 

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In the chill of winter, activewear keeps its cool with graphic, multi-patterned, black and white style. From the tennis courts of the Australian Open to your favorite spin, box, or HIIT class (check out these 31 workouts!), stay on the season’s hottest trend with the looks featured here! 

LEFT COLUMN: NIKECOURT DRY TENNIS DRESS $130. From the courts of the Australian Open now in full swing, comes this eye-popping black and white Nike tennis dress. As seen on Serena Williams, there is a full collection of matching shirts, shorts and tops, as well as the Mens Collection Roger Federer is sporting. NORMA KAMALI MARISSA STRIPED SWIMSUIT $175. With a low scoop back and high-cut leg, this sporty black and white striped swimsuit is creates a long, lean and sexy look. NO KA’OI HONI COLOR-BLOCK PERFORMANCE SHORTS $145. Don’t be fooled by these cute striped drawstring shorts. This is performance activewear. Light and comfortable, with an elasticated waistband and internal nude briefs, these shorts are made for running and all day sporty fun.

CENTER COLUMN: PERFECT MOMENT STARDUST INTARSIA MERINO TURTLENECK SWEATER $400. On the slopes, apres-ski, or worn around town, this thick ribbed, fine merino wool turtleneck will keep you warm in style with its playful graphic white star motifs. ADIDAS PURE BOOST X TRAINER ZIP SHOES $130. This lightweight training shoe is built with an ultra-responsive cushioning that returns energy with every step. Designed specifically for a woman’s foot, the shoe has a floating arch that hugs the foot and a zip closure for extra support. CARBON38 X CURTIS KULIG HIGUERA LEGGING $125. From Carbon38’s collaboration with renowned artist Curtis Kulig, these “Love Me” leggings make a bold and graphic statement. The entire collection features Kulig’s iconic “Love Me” artwork as the creative thread, adding an empowering message to this activewear line.
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2 Runners, 5 Shoes

 
TWO RUNNERS: SARAH & CLAUDIA

 
Looking for a little motivation to get you out on the road? How about a new pair of running shoes! We asked Nike, Asics, Newton, Hoka, and Brooks to send us their top picks for a lightweight neutral trainer. Since different runners like different shoes, I invited Sarah Toland, co-author of Lindsay Vonn’s recently published book, Strong Is The New Beautiful, and a 2004 U.S. Olympic Trials qualifier in the 5K and 10K, to road test these running shoes with me. She’s a tall and lanky gazelle of a runner, while I’m shorter and more compact in my running style  — what Sarah describes as “a recreational marathoner with zeal”. My goal is simply to get from point A to point B. Hers is to do it fast! Here are two different runners thoughts on five of the newest top trainers:

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NIKE LUNARGLIDE 8 $120

Nike says: The LunarGlide 8 offers breathable support and exceptionally soft cushioning to help you glide through your longest runs. Engineered mesh provides comfortable breathability while Flywire technology adapts to your foot for a secure fit. The soft, contoured Lunarlon midsole has precision-lasered cuts on the sides that collapse during footstrike to help you reach a smoother stride. A dynamic support platform adds comfortable, lightweight stability without weighing you down.

Sarah says: I loved how the Lunarglide fit my narrow foot and offered a great combination of a firm feel and well-cushioned ride. I wish it was a bit more springy and responsive, otherwise it might be my favorite out of all those we tested.  Read More

 

Savory Goodness! 9 Healthy Snacks

 

 

We’ve expounded on our love of snacks in many a post. Being as active as we are, and working the long hours that we do, we are always looking for healthy treats to keep us going in between meals. We last shared our favorite sweets in Super Sweets, and now we’re on to the savory. Here’s 9 of our go-to favorites!

ROW 1: HARD BOILED EGG. At about 80 calories with 7 grams of protein, a hard boiled egg is a filling snack that doesn’t fill you up. There is ongoing discussion about the cholesterol count, but recent research has concluded that infrequent egg consumption does not increase the risk of cardiovascular disease. Conveniently packaged in its own natural carrying case, boil them up and take them to go!

SEASNAX. Seasnax roasted seaweed sheets are marketed as “strangely addictive” and that they are. This is great news as seaweed is nutrient packed! It’s one of the richest sources of minerals, high in Iodine, Vitamin B12 and potassium. Seasnax come in convenient single serve packs that are a ridiculously low 15 calories a piece. Read More

 
 

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