Monday, February 24, 2014

Fit in DC: Hotel Palomar

Too cold to run outside in DC? Use the Hotel Palomar fitness center
Kimpton Hotels offer a variety of ways to keep fit, with free bicycles and large fitness centers.

We recently stayed at the Hotel Palomar, in Washington, DC, during the polar vortex. Those bicycles were hidden away (though we saw many hardy Washingtonians cycling around the city on Capital Bikeshare bikes, the bicycle sharing system) and the outdoor pool was hidden under an impermeable layer of ice.

Lots of exercise 'toys' at the Hotel Palomar
But the Dupont Circle luxury boutique hotel has an equally luxe fitness center, with plenty of floor space to spread out mats, stability balls and bosu balls, plus free weights and cardio machines.

There were also hula hoops, weight benches and strength machines.

I liked the extra touches; bananas and apples for a post-workout snack, headphones for those who forgot their own, and soft towels.

Note: we received a special media rate for our Hotel Palomar stay. Opinions are my own.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

No Excuses: Keeping Fit

Discreet packaging for JustGo Pads
I am the queen of exercise excuses - it’s too hot, too cold, too sunny, too rainy.  My ankle hurts, my knee hurts, I didn’t get enough sleep, I have the sniffles -  you get the idea.

Luckily, I don’t have a problem that plagues untold numbers of women, particularly those who have had kids - Athletic Leaks™. This is urinary incontinence during high impact activity - jumping, cross fit, running long distances. And it doesn’t just bedevil moms.  Teens have it, or grown women without kids.

But a mother of 5, (!!!) Brooke Solis, wouldn’t take this problem sitting down.  The lawyer and athlete had this vexing problem and hated the choices on the market - bulky incontinence pads or sanitary napkins.

Brooke started a company, JustGoGirl and patented the term Athletic Leaks™ (there’s that legal training) a polite way to describe the seepage that can happen during high impact workouts - or, she pointed out, in a bouncy house at a child’s birthday party.

Brooke developed a tapered JustGo Pad™ that can’t be seen from behind, yet absorbs accidents like a pro. After all, if you are rocking Lululemon pants you don’t want a reverse camel toe revealing your secret.

I put the pad to a comfort fashion test in spin class - my friend claimed she couldn’t see any evidence of the pad through my spandex shorts. The pad didn’t chafe and though I didn’t pee in class, I could see how the pad would be very useful on a long cross country ski outing, or during a marathon, even if you don’t have athletic leak issues.

Although the athletic leak condition is different from the kind of involuntary pee almost every woman has experienced - when she sneezes or laughs - I could also see the pads coming in handy if I were going to a comedy show. The pads hold almost a half a cup of liquid, so technically you could also use them for your period, though they are on the expensive side.

The pads are sold on amazon and through a JustGoGirl subscription service; 10 pads for $8 if you are an occasional exercisers, $20 for 14 pads a month and $18 for 30 a month for the every day exerciser.

Monday, February 10, 2014

History, Luxury - and a Modern gym

The Dearborn Inn, on Ford Motor Company property, is not your typical Marriott, though it is owned by the chain. The hotel is across the street from company headquarters and is convenient for visiting the Henry Ford Museum, Greenfield Village and the Automotive Hall of Fame.

The historic inn has several outbuildings with rooms, along with rooms in the main part of the hotel, where you'll also find a bar, the lobby with a fireplace and a restaurant. The fitness center is also in the main building, and if you are staying in winter, you may want to make sure your room is not in one of the outlying buildings.  I had an icy sprint, in shorts, to the gym.

But the gym offers new cardio and strength equipment, along with little touches like headphones and a stack of magazines.

There is also a seasonal outdoor pool if that's how you get your workout. But no polar bear events for me - just that short wintry run was enough.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Airport Hotel: Gateway to Fitness

Most airport hotels are dreary affairs, selected by weary travelers as a last resort, or strictly for convenience. But  the Westin Detroit Metro Airport Hotel is an anomaly, a luxury hotel with great amenities, like its gym. 
The huge gym has state of the art cardio and strength machines, free weights, stability balls and space to stretch. And you can't use the excuse that you forgot your workout clothes - the Westin rents sneakers and workout clothing for $5.
There are headphones if you've forgotten yours, nice soft towels, and chilled towels for a super cool down.
They don't rent bathing suits and there is also a pool, if that's how you like to exercise. But shopping is right at your fingertips; you can stroll into the airport shops.
The Westin has its own security line, so you can get to your gate in just minutes. If you are lucky enough to be flying Delta, the gates are literally right there, but the private security line is an amazing perk.
And with all the extra time you save, you can spend more time exploring Detroit.