Introducing blogs I think you should read (aside from this one). First up: Sweaty Reviews.
One year into this blogging thing, I’m still working on finding my mojo, if you will. I took a long break this past spring and summer when wedding planning took over my life, but now that I’m back, I still often struggle to find the balance between working on paying gigs for other sites and working on my blog. Every week, I come up with tons of new ideas for this here blog, but most of them don’t see the light of the Internet because I end up spending all of my time on my “official” freelance work. There are only so many hours in the day, amiright? Which is why I’m perpetually amazed by other bloggers, and their abilities—even when juggling full-time jobs, families, and social lives—to produce regular, quality, entertaining content. They’re inspiring to me, and give me jolts of motivation to put more work into my own blog, so I decided to spread the love and share them with you as well via my new series, Blogs to Bookmark.
First up: Lindsey, of Sweaty Reviews. Lindsey and I actually worked together in Nordstrom’s Men’s Furnishings department way back in 2009. We recently reconnected after realizing we both write blogs with a fitness angle (ie: I occasionally cover fitness on my blog; her blog is totally fitness-centric). She even re-posted my piece on Why I Pay For SoulCycle. Lindsey and two of her friends started Sweaty Reviews this past summer to give Chicagoans the low-down on the ever-evolving fitness scene, testing out studios and classes throughout the city, while sprinkling in some much-needed tips, inspiration, and deal alerts. I asked Lindsey some questions about Sweaty Reviews, blogging, and how she stays motivated to do so many workout classes. Here’s what she had to say:
Sarrandipity: Describe your blog in one sentence.
Lindsey: Sweaty Reviews is a website dedicated to reviewing workout classes, studios, and instructors as well as discussing fitness, health, and fashion as it relates to our readers’ sweaty lifestyle.
S: When and why did you start your blog?
L: I started Sweaty Reviews in June of 2015. I had begun using ClassPass in December of 2014 and fell in love. I became ‘the girl’ to go to for the best workout classes/instructors around Chicago. I figured it was my duty to share my knowledge with all of Chicagoland’s fitness enthusiasts and not just my friends. I then grabbed some friends who were just as passionate as I was, and the rest is history!
S: What’s your “day job”? How does it affect your blog/blogging?
L: I am a project manager for an insurance company and have been since graduation. I am not going to lie, it is sometimes tough to manage a full time job, daily workout classes, a social life, blogging, and sleep! Luckily I have my partners to lean on when I don’t have time to blog. We work together as a #sweatyteam. I couldn’t do it alone.
S: What has been the biggest challenge you’ve faced in blogging?
L: Getting it off the ground. Whenever something is new it can be scary, but we just plunged full force and haven’t looked back.
S: What has been the biggest surprise?
L: The biggest surpriseis how difficult and time consuming it can be to write an article. Sometimes I spend days on an article to make sure I do all the right research, vet it with my partners, and make sure I have all the right images. It is almost like writing a college paper every time, except more fun!
S: What’s your favorite post you’ve ever written?
L: One of my favorite posts so far is my interview with Tracy Chudnow, a Flywheel instructor. I am always so frantic when running into Flywheel (with only 5 minutes to get my bike setup) that her tips on bike setup are a lifesaver.
S: What’s your ultimate goal with blogging?
L: To keep spreading my knowledge of classes, studios, and instructors, to inspire people to become healthy, and to push my readers to try new workouts.
S: What is it like running a blog with two other people?
L: It is so awesome. The two other girls I run the blog with are my best friends. We proofread for each other and take classes together. It makes the blog that much more fun. I always intended to work with others; doing this alone just doesn’t have the same allure.
S: How many fitness classes do you do each week?
L: I try to go to about six workouts a week.
S: Is there any fitness trend or class you won’t try?
L: No! I want to/need to try them all!
S: What’s your current favorite workout?
L: This is such a hard question! [It] really depends what I am in the mood for. I love Yoga Sculpt on Saturday, a good cardio burst like Flywheel on Fridays, and during the week I like to mix in HIIT (like Kick@55 or SWEAT Chicago) and weights (like Sculpt at Lateral Fitness or Crossfit at ChicagoFitLife).
S: What’s your advice for people who may be nervous to try a new fitness class?
L: My best advice would be to connect with the teacher/owner of the gym. I was terrified to try Crossfit, so I came in about 10 minutes early to chat with the owner. He made me feel so comfortable and gave me some extra attention during class. Now Crossfit is one of my favorite classes! Just take it slow [and] don’t psych yourself out; every classes has people of all different fitness levels. Most importantly, working out is about YOU, so just go and do your best; there is no where to go but up!
S: Do you ever just not want to work out? How do you motivate yourself?
L: Yes, I definitely have my days. I just tell myself it is ONE hour out of my day and remind myself how good I feel after. But, I won’t lie, sometimes I do skip and get Fro-yo instead 🙂