Category Archives: Lifestyle

Top 10 Most Memorable Moments of 2016

Happy New Year Friends!  As you’ve probably noticed, I’ve been on a blogging hiatus since Thanksgiving 2016  (the longest stretch of no-posting in gritbybrit history – yikes!).  I’m not proud of this as blogging has been my most inspiring creative outlet over the past 4 years.  In fact, starting this blog is what pushed to me pursue my ultimate dream – starting my own fitness/wellness company.  It would be such a shame to neglect the one thing that gives me so much energy and motivation!

So, I’ve made a resolution to post weekly in 2017 and I commit to myself and to you that I will stick to it.  You can expect at least one post per week from me for the entire year – yes that’s 52 posts from yours truly.  Since my life has changed so much the past 2 years with the inception of my company, GRIT Fitness, I’ve decided I’m going to shift the focus of this blog to share more behind the scenes coverage of what it’s like running a start-up, innovating new fitness formats, building a brand and leading a team all while trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle.  I also plan to share business insights and frameworks that I’ve created to help with time management, goal setting, growing your business and building your brand.  Hopefully you’ll enjoy these posts!  Please comment and lemme know what you think long the way.

But before I go full speed ahead with my 2017 blogging approach, I first what to take some to time to express gratitude and reflect on the awesome moments I was blessed to experience in 2016.  Last year was definitely a period of growth, learning and FUN!  Here are the top 10 moments I will cherish forever (in no particular order)…

1. Celebrating 1 year of business at GRIT Fitness

Wow.  When I started GRIT Fitness in January of 2015, my only goal was stay alive.  But not only are we surviving, we have a growing, vibrant , thriving community of over 2,000 awesome young ladies! Most of the ladies who were my very first members now serve as instructors, community leaders and front desk staff.  We kicked off 2016 with a super fun Vino & Vinyasa 1-yr anniversary celebration.  It was a blast!

 

2. Being on TV, twice!

Look mom, I’m on TV!  This was so freaking cool and so totally unexpected.  Fortunately, 2 members of the GRIT community happened work for Fox 4 and pitched a segment to cover my journey of creating GRIT Fitness. That led to a me sharing my story on Fox 4  “In The Now.”  Then a producer at WFAA, Good Morning Texas reached out to us to demo some Dance Club Cardio moves on the show and talk about our fitness community.  2 terrific TV surprises in 2016!

 

3. Winning the Neiman Marcus Faces of Beauty Contest

This experience was totally surreal.  I felt like a beauty queen!  5 women out of 1,000 nominated were selected for this amazing honor based on the impact they’re making on women’s empowerment. Neiman Marcus gave me a styling session, killer new clothes, a box of the most luxurious beauty products, a makeover and photo shoot, an intimate dinner with the company’s executives and a night’s stay a luxury hotel.  Simply amazing.

 

4. Building and opening the GRIT Fitness Flagship Studio (2nd location)

What a journey!  After getting rejected by two SBA lenders and from several other landlords (because I hadn’t been in business long enough), I almost gave up hope on expanding GRIT Fitness.  But with the support of our community we raised $10K in a crowd funding campaign and I found an awesome small business lender in Austin, TX.  After a few months of planning and strategizing, we were blessed to open our 5,000 square foot flagship studio, just 6 months after celebrating our 1 year anniversary.

 

5. Growing and developing my team at GRIT Fitness to 48 team members!

I started GRIT Fitness with help of 10 fabulous young ladies.  1 was my sister, 3 I met on Craig’s List, 3 were students in my Turbo Kick classes at 24 Hour Fitness and the others were just friends who wanted to support me.  Now we are 4 times the size, but the closeness of our relationships remains. What I love about my team is that each girl serves at GRIT because she genuinely LOVES helping people and wants to be her best.  And that’s why I feel like we are truly the #DREAMTEAM

 

6. Sweating and smiling in LA and NYC

I’m such a sweat junkie!  This year I traveled to both LA and NYC just to explore the fitness scenes.  I called it my “market research” trip as I took 13 classes in 3 days in NYC and 9 classes 3 days in LA.  While I was in LA, I also attended the IDEA WORLD Fitness convention for the 3rd consecutive year. I LOVED IT!  The learning curve never ends.  I also treated myself to a nice hotel and great meals.  I definitely like my vacations sweaty!

 

7. Quality time with my best friends in Seattle, Canada & Dallas

Being a small business owner, it can be challenging to allocate time to just chill and hang out with friends.  Especially when most of your best fiends don’t live in your city.  Fortunately, my friend Jenn got married in Quebec City so I got to reunite with most of my business school friends during that trip.  And then my bestie from business school, Yassi pictured above, traveled to Dallas from South Africa for a work trip and we got to spend the entire weekend catching up, attending holiday parties and sipping mimosas.  Last, one of my best friends from undergrad also got married and I got to catch up with all of my Cornell friends at his wedding in Seattle, WA.  Quality time with great friends is simply priceless.

 

8. Finding a new church home at Shoreline Dallas

Before moving back to Dallas, I lived in NYC and I was member of Hillsong church which I absolutely loved (especially the awesome praise and worship music and relaxed culture)!  After moving back home to start GRIT Fitness I struggled all year to find a church home that I really connected with.  Fortunately my cousin invited to Shoreline’s SHINE Women’s conference and I love the diverse community,  high energy and enthusiasm for strengthening our faith.

 

9. Spending the holidays with my amazing family

I am so grateful for my family.  The older I get, the more I appreciate simply spending time with them.  The 2016 holiday season was super special because we spent Thanksgiving in Florida hanging out at the beach and watching my bother, Austin, play in his holiday basketball tournament.  Then for Christmas we just hung out at my parents’ house, went out to eat for Mexican food, and lazily hung around the house for 2 days.  It’s the little things that matter most.

 

10. Hosting ‘Start Up Yoga’ for Techweek in Dallas

Can we say “GRIT concert”?  This was hands down the most extravagant fitness experience I’ve ever been a part of – massive stage, flashing lights, live DJ, amazing venue full of Dallasite’s sweating and smiling.  I’m so grateful that my team and I were presented with the opportunity to work with Techweek, one of the largest technology/entrepreneurship conferences in the world!

While I’ve classified these 10 moments as the “most memorable” there were several other “less flashy” moments that were equally meaningful to me.  Like hanging out with my sister as “friends” despite our 8 year age gap, finally earning enough profit to write myself my first paycheck, holding hands with all members of my family and praying over the future of GRIT Fitness and my ability to be a good leader.  2016 was such a joy, but I know that the best is yet to come!  Here’s to 2017, the greatest year yet.  xoxo, Brit

Fabletics Fitness Fashion Friday

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Hey friends!  I want to bring back old tradition, Fitness Fashion Friday!  Every Friday you can check out my my most favorite workout clothes from the week.

This week I want to show off my newest outfit from Fabletics.  I was SO excited last Spring when Fabletics asked me to be one of their Master trainers.  I wasn’t too familiar with the brand at the time, but since then I’ve gotten to experience a ton of their styles and I must say that I’m now a Fabletics junkie!

This outfit is called the Supernova.  It’s 3 pieces all for only $69.95 when you become a VIP:

  1. Off the shoulder top
  2. Strappy sports Bra
  3. Black leggings

I’m obsessed with the look because it’s athletically chic! Don’t you think?

@gritbybrit

What your favorite winter workout look?

Celebrating 1 Year of Business at GRIT Fitness

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Hey hey friends!  My baby (GRIT Fitness) turned 1-year-old this week – YAY!  It feels like yesterday I wrote this post recapping our grand opening party.  It’s crazy how much good stuff happens in 365 days.IMG_0191

We kicked off the business birthday celebration with a Friday night VINO + VINYASA (wine + yoga) party at my studio.  Over 50 members of our GRIT Family came out to celebrate!  The party was complete with wine, cupcakes and my favorite birthday jamz (e.g. Rhianna Birthday Cake).

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We’ve  kept the party going all week with themed classes.  (See above our full list of themed classes – I’m pretty proud of our creativity here).  Today was our final round of themed classes, “Crunk Party HIIT’s” = High Intensity Interval Training classes set to  our favorite party songs.  Lots of sweat and lot of smiles guaranteed!

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Some of my rockstar instructors and advisory board members at the Vino & Vinyasa party. From left to right: Emily H. Emily T., Annabel, Ariana & Tarra

As I reflect on the past year I pinch myself because I can’t believe this is really happening!  Just over a year ago I was a traveling management consultant, disengaged with my career and pouring myself into this blog as a way to escape my “real life”. But now  this is my life.  We really did it!  We built a business and a community out of a simple idea and lot of hard work.  The accomplishments and experiences (good and bad) from this past year give me so much confidence and hope that the best really is yet to come…

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Me and Jenny, our VERY 1st member at GRIT in January 2015 – thanks for the loyalty Jenny!

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Me and Megan, GRIT Front Desk Team Lead

In only 1 year we’ve grown to over 2,500 active members, 15 instructors, 35 classes per week and 7 original class formats – WOW!  As  I said in the last post, “teamwork makes the dream work.”  But the best part of the journey are the personal relationships I’ve made with the #GRITFAM and they’ve made with each other.  Nothing is more important than family – #GRITFAM included!

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Sophie (Maria’s Daughter), Me, Maria & Jenny smiling after the sweating Flexin’ Flow class at the Vino & Vinyasa party

Stay tuned my friends…this is only the beginning of the GRIT Fitness revolution.  I have some exciting news to share in the coming weeks and I want you to be the first to know! 

THANKS SO MUCH for following my journey to and through healthy living and entrepreneurship.  xoxo, Brit

Awesome Activity Tracker for Girls on the Go

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Hey friends! I hope this post finds you joyous and well. Today I’m super excited to share that I finally found the perfect activity tracker! Over the past month I’ve been wearing the vívofit 2 by Garmin and I’m super impressed by the data accuracy, added features, functionality and most importantly the battery life. The vívofit 2 is perfect for girls on the go since it has a 1 year+ battery life and stays on 24/7. That means I don’t have to charge it or put it on sleep mode.

I also love that all of the info I want is easily accessed on my wrist: time, date, my step goal, distance, calories burned and Move Bar. The Move Bar is super effective at giving me the nudge I need to get up from behind my laptop and move around a bit. You can find more product facts about the vívofit 2 here: www.garmin.com/vivofit

I especially appreciate the detailed health data that helps me make healthier lifestyle choices. For instance, I observed that on days I teach at GRIT Fitness I always hit my activity/step goal. However on non-teaching days, my vívofit 2 has made very clear that I need to increase my activity. It’s not best for my body to be super active on some days and not on others – consistency is key! Now I try to stand instead of sit while doing administrative work for my business. I also try to take the stairs instead of the elevator and park far away from the door when running errands.

Here’s a screen shot of my steps on a day that I teach classes…crushing it  🙂

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And here’s my sleep data from each night last week (I didn’t wear my vívofit 2 on Wednesday and Thursday nights so disregard that data) …

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Last but not least, the vívofit 2 has interchangeable bands so I can swap out the colors to coordinate with my outfit! I’ve owned several activity trackers over the past 3 years and this is the first that allows me to enjoy a variety of colors at the same time. Here are the other bands I have – yay for pastels!

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If you’re in the market for a new or improved activity tracker I highly recommend the vívofit 2. And with the holidays just around the corner, it’s a perfect gift idea!

Enjoy and have fun staying active.  xoxo, Brit

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Garmin through their partnership with POPSUGAR Select. While I was compensated to write a post about vívofit 2, all opinions are my own.

My 2nd Business Pitch Contest

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Me giving my pitch for GRIT Fitness at the Innovate HER competition in San Antonio, Nov. 17, 2015

Hey Friends!  Last week my mom and I made  road trip down to San Antonio, TX where I competed in the InnovateHER Women’s Business Pitch Competition sponsored by the SBA (Small Business Administration).  It was a bittersweet experience as I practiced all week, picked out the perfect outfit and thought through all of the questions the judges may ask.  Alas, I didn’t win 🙁

However, I felt really great about my pitch delivery.  Unlike the competition I recently won at the Dallas Entrepreneur Center (DEC), this was a true “pitch” competition meaning I only got 2 minutes to speak and could only have 1 slide on the screen.  That said I had to prioritize the most critical aspects of my business plan and immediately excite the judges.  This experience definitely pushed me past my comfort zone and elevated me to a new level of public speaking and handling high-pressure situations.  Also, I got to the meet the founders of these 4 awesome, female-owned start up companies – I highly suggest you check them out and show them some love!

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The 5 Finalist – Me and the fierce female entreprenuers who presented our businesses to the judges – I was so inspired by their awesome ideas, passion & energy!

In the spirit of “keeping it real” I was super bummed about the outcome (I even shed a few tears when I was alone in the lady’s room).  Honestly after watching the video of my pitch, there wasn’t anything I thought I could have significantly improved.  Fortunately, my competitive nature is getting the best of me and now I’m even more motivated to spread the positive vibes of GRIT Fitness and impact women all over the world!  #CantStopWontStop

Before I went to bed that night, I came across this post that gave me so much peace, hope and purpose.

“I want to be in the arena. I want to be brave with my life. And when we make the choice to dare greatly, we sign up to get our asses kicked. We can choose courage or we can choose comfort, but we can’t have both. Not at the same time. Vulnerability is not winning or losing; it’s having the courage to show up and be seen when we have no control over the outcome. Vulnerability is not weakness; it’s our greatest measure of courage.”
― Brené BrownRising Strong

I remember being in my corporate career with my steady paycheck and awesome expense account and thinking to myself, “I want more than this.  I want to take a risk with my life and pursue my dream.”  Now I’m living boldly and there are several ups and downs, but boy is it exciting!  I hope this quote positively impacts you as much as it did me.

Keep up the good work ladies and shout out to all of the #GIRLBOSS chicks out there!  xoxo, Brit

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Me and my Mama Kay enjoying margaritas and Mexican food on the San Antonio River Walk after the competition – you can find a silver lining in EVERY experience if you just look for it!

Blog Buddies Turned Soul Sisters

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TGIF Friends!  This has been such an amazing week.  Before I headed to San Antonio to compete in the SBA (Small Business Administration) InnovateHER Pitch competition (more details on that coming in a later post) I got a surprise visit from one of my dearest blog buddies, Chelle!  Chelle writes a blog called EveryDay Polish and we connected when I hosted a GRIT Tank top giveaway last year.  I asked my readers, “What does GRIT mean to you?” and Chelle won by providing this answer…

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Keep in mind that Chelle lives in Connecticut and we’ve never met in person but we keep in touch online and have followed each other’s blogs of over a year.  I was overjoyed when she made trip to Texas and a surprise visit at my noon HIIT class on Monday!

Moments like these give me so much purpose and motivation.  I’m not going to lie, blogging and  running small business can be exhausting and overwhelming.  However, knowing that I’m able to positively impact the lives of others by simply being myself and sharing my life-story, is so amazing!

Have you connected with any of your blog buddies?

Wishing you a wonderful weekend!  xoxo, Brit

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No longer “Blog Buddies,” now “Soul Sisters”

I Love Fall: Blue Ridge Mountain, GA

On our first day, we woke up bright and early and I led the group through a body weight boot camp workout on the dock! (they were super sore the next day - wink wink) Obviously I made them wear the hot pink GRIT sunglasses during their workout.

On our first day, we woke up bright and early and I led the group through a body weight boot camp workout on the dock! (they were super sore the next day – wink wink) Obviously I made them wear the hot pink GRIT sunglasses during their workout.

Hey hey friends!  How’s your week going?  I’m back in action after enjoying an AMAZING getaway to Blue Ridge Mountain, GA!  My classmates from Harvard Business School and I have an annual tradition of going on a “family vacation.”  We basically pick a random rural city and spend a few days cooking, engaging in conversations about life, making fun of each other and simply disconnecting from the craziness of our demanding careers.

We’ve each taken different career paths and culturally have very different backgrounds, but we’re connected by our values and senses of humor.  This year we rented a beautiful lake house about 2 hours outside of Atlanta in Blue Ridge Mountain, GA.  2 years ago we went to Asheville, North Carolina which was also a blast.  We even made a “Buddy Bootcamp” video at our lake house that year, haha – you can view it here.

I just wanted to share some pics from the trip, because during this time with my best buds I felt so grateful and content.  It’s crazy how simply taking some time out of the day-to-day can restore and rejuvenate your spirit.

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View from our porch

Jen, Eric, Chris, Lakshmi and I starting the day with a homemade breakfast and coffee!

Jen, Eric, Chris, Lakshmi and I starting the day with a homemade breakfast and coffee!

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Hiking with IPA in hand

Family pic with the self stick after our hike!

Family pic with the self stick after our hike!

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Finishing a long day with a home-cooked meal and a puzzle.  Smiling from ear to ear after we DOMINATED the “Where in the US is Carmen San Diego” puzzle -we finished it just under 45 minutes – yeah buddy!

Overall, I think the Fall is great season to chill out a bit and reflect on how great life is.  I’m grateful for my awesome friends and for the time that we spend together. How do you reflect and rejuvenate?