As I mentioned last week, as part of Fitfluential I was invited to attend a global PR event Reebok hosted in NYC. I honestly knew very little about what to expect besides the fact that I’d chosen to participate in running, CrossFit and yoga as my 3 activities of the day. Zumba & walking were the other 2 options and I’m not going to lie and say that I didn’t have nightmares about accidentally getting placed in the Zumba group. I’m a “dancing only happens after at least 3 drinks” kinda gal, not a “let’s do this as our workout” type.
Upon arriving and meeting up with Ashley at the door, we were given a sweet duffle bag of outfits for the day. One each for the activities we had chosen all from Reebok’s new fall gear line-up. We had some down time to explore the different set-ups displaying the new product before getting changed into our first activity outfit and listening to the opening remarks from Chief Marketing Officer, Matt O’toole.
When you think Reebok, you probably think late 80s, puffy hair, step aerobic glad women owning that spandex, right? Well, the cool thing is that Reebok is kinda taking that old school image and running with it when it comes to their woman’s gear. When it comes to working out, maybe 5% will make it to that “elite” category. The rest of us will happily rock out that 95% slice, running, yoga-ing, dancing, CrossFitting or doing whatever makes us happy when it comes to exercise. We will BE those puffy haired women of the 80s (just with better clothes) and we will own it.
Reebok wants to be the brand for that 95%. Their goal is to create empowerment through fitness. According to Matt, Reebok sees fitness becoming more and more a way of life, not an activity. The days of going to the gym with your headphones in and tuning everyone out are numbered while the era of creating a “community” and an “experience” through sport is really starting to take off.
When he said that, I couldn’t help but just nod along in agreement. As someone who literally counts down the hours to CrossFit every day not just for the exercise but because it’s a legitimate social activity for me, I couldn’t epitomize what he said any better.
After the spiel from Matt, we were introduced to all the Reebok affiliated athletes like Tara Stiles, Christmas Abbott, Alissa McKaig, Annie Sakamoto and more who would be leading each of the day’s activities and kicked things off with a group warm-up.
From there, we began the day’s fitness events. I started with yoga and let me tell you, walking into an all white room with blue blacklighting going on and inspirational sayings all over the walls makes yoga a liiiiiiiittle bit more fun than a dvd in your living room. I’ve never been so excited to do yoga in my life. Tara was awesome and led us in a 20 minute routine that was the perfect stretch for the rest of the day’s events. I haven’t done yoga in over a year and this was a nice reminder that maybe I should start that back up. CrossFit has definitely made me stronger but I think I may have reverted a bit in the flexibility department. #mybodydoesntmovelikethat
If you think I was most excited about the CrossFit wod, you’d be right. When I heard we were being bussed over to Reebok CrossFit 5th Ave. I got giddy like a little kid. I figured the wod would be mostly body weight with limited equipment to accommodate everyone’s abilities and I was right.
3 rounds for reps:
1 min burpees
1 min kettle bell swings (35lbs.)
1 min box jumps (20”)
After we sweat our butts off doing that, we got to watch Christmas & Annie do an abbreviated version of the workout which was probably the highlight of the day for me. Christmas talked a bit about perception and body image afterwards too, highlighting how the sport of CrossFit takes your goals from aesthetics to what your body can do for you. From wanting toned muscles to wanting that first pull-up or rope climb. So true. Yeah, I’d love either of their arms, but you know what I want more than that after almost 1 year of CrossFit? A strict pull-up that comes easy. A full handstand pushup. A freakin’ muscle up. I want the performance, not the aesthetics because who cares what my arms look like if they still can’t power me through a damn muscle up.
The last event of the day was running. With our running gear on, we headed over to the Hudson river for about a 2.5k run. I got a great tip from Zika (the founder of Zap Fitness which Reebok sponsors) about keeping my arms a bit looser and letting my hands fall back and forth by my hips instead of keeping them at the 90 degree angle from my elbow that I normally do. Such a small thing, but the second I focused on making that change, I literally felt the tension in my upper body subside and the running part got infinitely easier. You think running is mostly a leg sport, but it’s amazing how much tension hangs out in your shoulders and upper body. Definitely something I’m going to remember from here on out!
Part of our running gear included the new Reebok One Series Cushion shoe (available in July). I was a little skeptical of running in these neutral shoes because I have a slew of foot issues and normally wear orthotics in a very supportive shoe. These are pretty minimalist in nature as far as running shoes go but surprisingly, my feet felt great after the run! They’re noticeably lighter than a “normal” running shoe which literally made me feel an extra bounce in my step. I took them for a spin when I got home too for a bit longer of a run and I’m still really surprised at how great they feel on my normally high maintenance feet. The shoe is zoned in 3 areas which you can see divided by color for more support in the back to more flexibility in the front and they seem to have done it in such a way that you get just enough support without all the extra weight that normally comes with that.
We also learned that Reebok has teamed up with Spartan Race this year and they’re coming out with a shoe dedicated to obstacle running. How cool is that? It’s basically a lightweight/minimalist looking shoe with cleats and drainage. If you’ve done a Spartan Race you know that the mud + water can be a bit tricky without the proper footwear. Reebok’s intent here is to get the mud off of the shoe with the cleat part and let the water drain through the bottom. There’s very little foam in the shoe so it doesn’t retain any water and get all heavy as you get on in miles. And the best part? You don’t throw this shoe away at the end of the race, it’s washable. Prior to this event, Spartan Races seemed like a combination of an awesome/horrific idea to me. Tell a girl there’s a cool pair of shoes for it though and the horrific-ness starts to miraculously subside.
As I mentioned last week, I left this event totally inspired. I love how Reebok is focusing on the majority of the fit population and not the elite 5%. It’s realistic and empowering at the same time. And let’s be real, clothes that look good on you make you feel good and when you feel good, your workout is that much better because you’re already in a positive frame of mind. Maybe that’s vain but I can tell you I felt bad ass rocking these the other day as we did Fight Gone Bad.
*As part of Fitfluential, I was given the opportunity to attend this event. The Reebok product I received was free. This post is not compensated and all opinions are my own.