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BURN100 – my circuit to burn 100 calories in 10 minutes!

February 10th, 2014 1 Comment

Last week SELF magazine launched the SELF video channel online to offer a variety of fitness web series to help you get your burn on.  I shot 4 episodes of BURN100 where I do a circuit of exercises to burn 100 calories in 10 minutes using only equipment you would have at home.  In this first episode, I created a yoga-inspired series:

  • Yoga burpee
  • Crescent lunges
  • Yoga wave (warrior 2 to reverse warrior)
  • Build a bridge

You’ll see as I go I get out of breath.  The constant movement really gets your heart rate up and builds heat in your muscles WITHOUT having to kill yourself.

It’s a great workout to wake up your body and start the day.  The flow is easy to do in a hotel room or when you’re on vacation (and know you need to do SOMETHING physical).

Every Monday I’ll be posting a new killer workout.  There were four other trainers who participated like Brett Hoebel from the Biggest Loser.  So no more excuses to NOT exercise.


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Exercising on a juice cleanse

January 27th, 2014 No Comments

Mary Rambin SOULCYCLE BVHL 6am crew

First of all, meet some of my regular “rooster” riders who get up at 5am to rock out with me at 6am in Beverly Hills.  These are some of the strongest people in town, and the best part is that they have KNOW their own strength!  That, my readers, is harder than it sounds, so I’ll get to that later.

When I did my 4-day juice cleanse, 5-day total cleanse (one day juice and vegan), I had to teach my SOULCYCLE classes.  Thankfully that week I only had 6 classes which is a cake walk for me.  Because my tolerance is so high, I scheduled other forms of exercise: yoga and lifting with a trainer.  As most people said, “You’re crazy.  How can you do that?”  My body is admittedly unique in that my fitness level is really high.  Throughout all of the activities, I never felt fatigued.  Later in the day, of course my energy would drop so I would schedule naps.  Thirty minutes of napping for each hour of exercise.  Everyday I slept an hour.

What I’m trying to prove to you is not that you have to push yourself on a cleanse to get results, but that you shouldn’t be afraid to maintain your normal routine. 


Be confident in your own strength and keep your exercise routine.  If you worry about being hungry and losing energy, you will be desperate and depleted.  Your mind, not your body, will make that happen.  Also know that you can always STOP.  No one says you have to finish each workout or that you have to continue your routine.  Do what makes you feel good.

A lot of you don’t have the ability to take a mid-day nap, which is why I call it a luxury and don’t advise straying from your routine.


Exercise keeps your metabolism revved up to burn the sugar (from fruits) in the juices.  There is A LOT more sugar than you realize involved most cleanses so your calorie intake is high.  As you won’t have fiber in your diet, staying active helps your digestive system move along the stuff your colon sluffs off as well as the toxins your lymph system releases.   Sweating is another powerful way to expel the toxins.

Remember, you can always take a day off or stop altogether.  But I truly believe that if you keep your days the same, you’ll worry less about the cleanse and feel the benefits of it more when you’re done.

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“This is how strong people start their year.”

January 6th, 2014 No Comments

@BiteSizeArtist SOULCYCLE


I have two riders Nicole (above) and Amanda who rock out with me several mornings at 7am.  Before they can even wipe of their sweat, they’ll insta-everything and say “This is how strong people start their day.”  Words they hear from me and make it a reality for themselves. Way to go ladies.

In the past I’ve proclaimed (yes, proclaimed) how I don’t do resolutions because I believe each day I should try to improve myself, grow stronger in some way, allow  change, etc.  But this year, I actually feel like I need to set a fitness goals for myself. It’s too easy to just teach 10 classes a week.  Seriously, it is.  I really feel like now that body is comfortable with that, it wants a new challenge.  So here’s how I feel strong starting out this new year.  I will:

  1. Wear my heart rate monitor.  It’s the smartest thing I can do and will help guide me through my workouts.
  2. Lift weights one day a week.  This is to build strength.  My muscles have endurance by riding, but they aren’t getting stronger BECAUSE I take it easy so I can teach all week long.
  3. Yoga 2 days a week.  I don’t want to get back to where my muscles are so tight they ache.  That’s how I felt before I left for vacation.
  4. Boxing one day a week.  First of all, it’s fun and I miss it.  Also, the activity is a great way to push my heart rate to its limit.  Again, SOULCYCLE will do that, but I can’t push myself to exhaustion when I have to talk.

Ambitious, but I’m going to give it a shot!

Now your turn.  Go ahead, don’t be afraid of what you want. I believe most people fear change in some way, even if they want it.  As I always tell my riders, the only thing holding you back…..is you.

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Don’t sacrifice your workout time for holiday parties.

December 2nd, 2013 No Comments


Last week I talked about the benefits of working out during the holiday season, but I neglected to address one of the main excuses we give ourselves to skip the gym. “I don’t have time!”

When you’re social schedule kicks into high gear and you’re strapped for the extra hour, try exercising at home.  Besides gaining the extra time in the day  your body will have more energy for socializing and a revved up metabolism for burring off the hors d’oeuvrs and champagne.

My girlfriend JJ has gotten herself into a daily Temescal hike coupled with free weights or yoga AT HOME.  I give the girl serious props (is that still ok to say?) for finding motivation to exercise on her own and sticking to it! Looks like her yoga practice is pretty solid:

JJ Klein doing yoga


For some of us, me included, working out at home sounds almost impossible.  I’ve compiled a list of tools here to help you get started.

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Big beats for your music library

November 13th, 2013 No Comments

The music we use for our SoulCycle playlists is NOT easy to find or download. All the more reason to share, right?!

I’ve directed you to my SoundCloud and HypeMachine profiles where I “like” remixes I find.  You can also follow my Rdio SOULCYCLE Selection playlist, where I add new songs regularly.

If none of that works for you, I’ve compiled a few of my rider favorites here.  You can’t download them, so just email me what you love and I’ll send you the song!


Any songs you’re into right now, please share it in the comments below.

If you’re in LA, come ride! My regular schedule:

  • Monday – BVHL 6am, 7am
  • Tuesday – BVHL 7am
  • Wednesday – SAMO 1pm
  • Thursday – BVHL 7am
  • Saturday – SAMO 4pm
  • Sunday – BVHL 1pm


The unanimous rider and instructor favorite: Suit and Tie Remix

A very close second fave: Augustana – On the Other Side

Linkin Park x Steve Aoki – A light that never comes

Eagles – Hotel California Remix

WALRU5 Hunter - Workin on My Tan Bitch Remix

Jay Z – Dirt Off Your Shoulder Brillz and ZTrip Remix

2 Chainz & Diplo – A Different Butters Theme

The Neighbourhood – How

Hate Street Dialogue – Thomas Jack Remix

Grace Potter – Oh La La Paris remix

Avicii – Addicted to You

Stateless – Bloodstream

The Weekend – Wicked Games HugLife DJ Slink Remix

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“How do I shred the pounds?”

September 30th, 2013 No Comments

Level10 Manhattan Beach

This was the question presented to me by Erika, a cute young actress at SoulCycle the other day.  It’s a small question, with a very large answer.  Losing weight and staying healthy isn’t an easy process.  You have to be METICULOUS with the details.  But here’s my first response: YOU’RE WORTH IT.  The better answer is you shouldn’t diet at all.  Instead, hit the reset button and put your eating and exercise regimen on the right track and create  a sustainable lifestyle.

If and when you’re ready, here are my suggestions on how to train your body to burn fat.  Click the links for more details and use the navigation above to find exercises and recipes and nutritional help along the way.


Easier said than done, I know.  However, I’m not telling you to cut out carbs. Carbohydrates – fiber and sugar – found in fruits, veggies, and whole grains, are good for you.  What you need to cut out is the raw sugar, honey, agave, alcohol, etc.  When your body craves sugar, eat sweet fruits you love (like a banana, peach, or even dried mango) instead of cupcakes or vino.  You’ll find you mellow out as your blood sugar rises.  Over time, the intensity of your cravings will decrease and you’ll drop the fruits too.

Screen Shot 2013-09-30 at 12.09.20 PM

Click the chart to learn about how to choose carbs.  Read more here.

A cleanse can be a great way to kick the sugar to the curb quickly.  More on that here.

Bottom line: the sugar you don’t burn during the day gets stored as fat.  Hence the following:


When you’re starting out, the actual exercise doesn’t matter.  Just do something, or rather, 3 different things you love to get your body in gear and your mind motivated.  Cross-trainging builds muscle while ramping up your metabolism.  My recommendation:

As I said earlier, the key to success is being METICULOUS.  So once you get going, buy a heart rate monitor and be smart about your workouts.  YOU HAVE TO KNOW YOUR HEART RATE ZONES IN ORDER TO TRAIN YOUR BODY TO BURN FAT.  If you don’t get your heart rate into the proper zones, you might not actually be hitting your fat burning heart rate zone.  For more on heart rate monitors, go here.

Weight lifting is usually a sticky spot for women, but we need it.  If you’re unfamiliar with how to use machines and set up a workout, HIRE A TRAINER.  In two to three sessions, they can teach you what you need to know and at least get you started.  Remember, YOU’RE WORTH IT!  And since you’ve cut back on the booze, you’ll have some extra cash to play with.

Beware of group fitness classes for your weight lifting days.  Usually they are better for your cardio days.  When you lift weights, you need to be using substantial weight, not 3-5 lb dumbbells.


On their own, carbs fill you up instantly and leave you hungry within an hour (an example of “healthy” meal that left me starving here).  Protein and good fats are what satisfy your hunger for at two to three hours.  In every meal, an active women needs 20-30 grams of protein, preferably from lean meats, eggs, or powders (cold pressed whey, pea, or hemp).  Because the protein is lean, you need to add a little bit of fat (about 6-9 grams):  almonds, olive oil, cheese, avocado, coconut oil, seeds.  If you don’t have the fat, your body won’t be satisfied and you’ll be reaching for food within the hour.

The goal is for each meal and snack to have the same amount of protein, fat, carbs, and calories.

It’s the part that sucks, but works!

For me, the breakdown looks like this:

  • 300 calories
  • 9g fat
  • 20-30g protein
  • 25-30g carbs

I eat every two to three hours so that my metabolism is constantly working.

Read more about being meticulous in creating your portions here.


This point speaks to your metabolism.  If you’re hungry, your body isn’t satisfied.  When you don’t eat, your metabolism slows down and your body starts to feed upon itself.  Not a good situation.  For goodness sakes eat something.  Stock your purse and car with healthy snacks so you reach for something good instead of sweets.

Now, if you’ve JUST eaten your full meal and you’re still hungry.  Drink water.  Most of the time we’re dehydrated and your body is thirsty.


In your food and exercise, you need to be efficient.  If you spend an hour in the gym and don’t know what you’re doing, you’ve wasted the hour.  If you feed your body processed food instead of natural goodness, you are pulling your body backwards instead of fueling it forward.


Take one or even two days off of exercise so your body can rest.  If your muscles are exhausted, they can’t build strength.


Please note, I’m NOT an expert.  I have worked with experts in fitness and nutrition and this is the system I’ve found works for me.

(First photo I took at Level10 Fitness in Manhattan Beach.  My favorite circuit training….in the world ;)  Meredith is truly one of a kind!)

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Rate your own burn

July 1st, 2013 No Comments


I’m looking back on my express beach workout yesterday and giving myself a little pat on the back while kicking myself at the same time.

On the one hand, I’m proud I decided to do some form of exercise in the 40 minute window before Amy’s baby shower. However, I really didn’t push myself to make it a intense workout.  Sounds picky?  But is it really?

I’ve written posts in the past in which I suggest we feel satisfied about our efforts, no matter how powerful they are. We win if we get to exercise at all.

At the same time, I find myself (and see others) make excuses not to give 100% – in workouts and in life, if we’re being honest.  This was the case with my workout above.  Case in point: I instagramed this pic DURING the workout!

Most of the you know the site RateYourBurn where people can judge the intensity of a studio, class, and instructor. We pay and therefore rely on these people to push our limits. As an instructor, I see the job as an honor that someone bestows their time and trust in me to take them outside of their comfort zone. As someone participating in a class, I know at some point it’s my responsibility to practice maintaining my form, increase the weight/resistance, and push myself.

Intensity is a joint effort.

So this week, as summer gets into full swing and all we want to do is slack off, let’s bring a deeper focus to our exercise and make the best use of the time we allot for it.

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How far will you travel to exercise?

June 24th, 2013 No Comments
Mary Rambin Colin Kim Equinox Crew 2007

Equinox WeHo crew 2007


As I’ve said before, for me, SoulCycle isn’t enough of a workout to “stay in shape.”  Don’t get me wrong, the two and half month boot camp was physically fulfilling and killer (more than enough) for me.  In a regular workout regimen, SoulCycle 3-4 times a week is amazing if you can do it, but I still need more: yoga and heavy weights at least one time a week each.

Thankfully in LA, I can find both in an Equinox.  The weight areas are clean, the group fitness is ridiculously challenging, and the yoga is sublime. The question for me remains: which location do I join?  The one in Santa Monica near my house OR the WeHo location where I’ve been going to for a decade with all of my friends.

Our spinning crew (above) was a cult that followed Stacey, Colin, and Keith to the beat of the music BEFORE SoulCycle ever started. Kristin’s yoga class, which our group also continues to love, is unlike anything else I’ve ever experienced. Her guidance has developed my practice, pushed my personal boundaries, and taken me to physical and mental places I never thought I would reach.  Can you say that about many yoga classes??

My little WeHo Equinox has exploded to be quite a scene, but I still love it. Plus, the more hard bodies in eyesight, the harder I work.

The commute to WeHo is 20 minutes, without traffic.

So, I’m going to give it a shot twice a week.  I can do that because I work for myself.  But I know others with very demanding jobs (Andy, that’s you!) that travel quite a distance to exercise.

If you love a particular workout, if you know there is nothing else like it, do you make the journey?  How far is that?  For you.  Is 10 minutes “far?” or do you need the gym to be within walking distance?  Will you make an effort for a studio you love?

As I’ve always said,  a good workout is more than just physical.  No matter what it is, you’ll have to pay in terms of money, time, and effort to do it.  Only you can assess the return.  And if the ROI is big, I bet you’ll make the trip.

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