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Columbus Food, Fitness + Fun June 2023


June came... and June went! I always feel like this month flies by. We spend so much time the first half of the year waiting for summer, then we blink! June is also my favorite month of the year. Maybe it's because it's my birthday month or maybe it's that I resonate hard with Cancer qualities and imperfections but none the less, it's a damn good month.


This year I was able to spend more time with my husband doing what we do best... eat at restaurants! My priorities were to try and eat outside as much as possible as well as try more breakfast spots. I really enjoy going to church on Sundays then heading to brunch with my husband. Post brunch, we go lifting at the gym and it's our new Sunday tradition!


I also got to attend many group fitness studios. I tried a mix of yoga, barre and high intensity interval training.


Lastly, I started using the omnipod pump at the start of this month. It has been somewhat of a rollercoaster; but my blood sugar has been better. It's still no where near perfect, but the control I have over what happens is like night and day. Unfortunately, due to being so active and eating a lower carb diet, I have experienced a LOT more lows. Some were scary, some are very obvious. So outside of trying new fun Columbus activities, I've been managing my blood sugar levels through all these different situations. It's been a challenge, but one that needed to happen.


Restaurants

City: Westerville

Cuisine: Greek + Italian

Healthy Hack: Ask for vegetables with the hummus platter as an appetizer! When I am really hungry, I love starting with raw vegetables to sort of "fill up" so I don't over indulge in Mike's French fries! ;)



Koble grill is an interesting restaurant. After being seated, you order at the counter and your food is brought out by servers. It's kinda like they wanted to make it a fast casual meets sports bar feel. I was intrigued by the greek-italian concept. While dining here, Mike and I stuck with the greek theme and ordered a hummus appetizer, calamari and drinks to start. The hummus app was amazing; in fact, we boxed it up and took it home. I really enjoyed my salmon salad as well! Mike wasn't a huge fan of his gyro, but 3/4 is a win in my book.


City: Hilliard

Cuisine: Diner/breakfast

Healthy Hack: Yep, they serve egg whites! I do enjoy full eggs and believe they are very nutrient dense; however, when I am dining at a breakfast spot, I know I'll be eating more calories with the potatoes and bacon. To cut back, I always order the egg whites.


Starliner Diner has been voted the best breakfast spot in all of Columbus! It is located in old Hilliard. This diner is funky; the walls are painted in outer-space, 90's colors. We dined in on a Sunday at 10AM. Luckily, we got sat right away. The diner has plenty of unhealthy to healthier options, but picture your classics to be listed with fun cuban twists like black bean sides and burritos.


City: Short North Columbus

Cuisine: Small plates

Healthy Hack: There are a lot of protein options! Try the oysters, the "stix", or the chicken meatballs for high protein shareables.


Mike and I had a Friday date night at Lincoln Social the first weekend of June to kick off summer! We didn't know what food to expect but we knew the atmosphere was pretty cool. In rooftop fashion, everything was small plates. I love this type of meal; you get to try a little of everything and leave behind whatever you don't like because someone else will eat it! I ordered oysters and hummus with extra vegetables. Mike ordered the pizza and scallop sticks. Everything was very very good. I loved all the protein options and didn't feel overly full when leaving.


City: Columbus

Cuisine: Diner/ breakfast

Healthy Hack: Simple is best! I ordered the eggs benedict without hollandaise sauce. This is simple; eggs, English muffin and Canadian bacon. Protein, carbs and fat!


The photo may look sad, but this breakfast spot is a staple in Columbus. It truly is an old 50's diner, with the tux box in the background and red leather bar stools. We stopped here before a Sunday lifting session, so I got the eggs Benedict (minus the sauce). It was actually really good; the English muffin was small and the Canadian bacon was very thinly sliced. I enjoyed this balanced breakfast! There were many other not so healthy items on the menu, but breakfast is pretty easy to manipulate to work with your goals.


Gyms + Fitness Studios

City: Upper Arlington

Class Type: Barre, Strength Barre

Healthy Hack: Try a few different classes with a few different teachers! Each class I took was completely different.


Barre 3 is a Barre studio located in Upper Arlington. I had a free week to test out my barre-skills, and let me tell you that they were nonexistent. Barre is not my cup of tea per se, but I love working on my weeknesses so I didn't pass up the opportunity to try out a few classes. If you like Barre, you will love Barre 3. It was the most friendly environment and the classes were fun! When I tried the strength class, I quickly learned that strength meant under repetition or time, not total strength. So don't be a super hero with the 15's... you might regret it!


City: Lewis Center

Class Type: HIIT classes

Healthy Hack: I used these classes as cross training because it incorporated running with many breaks along with strength training. They had up to 25lbs available and you could go at your own pace. I felt really good after doing these classes on a day I did not already run.

Shred 4/15 was super fun and a great workout. If you're looking for a higher intensity cardio and strength class, 4/15 will do it! Just as the name implies, this class is broken into 4 parts. I started the first 15 minutes at the treadmill. These intervals are a combination of speed and grade to challenge your aerobic system. They give ample amount of breaks and also allow you to chose your numbers. Feeling tired? You don't have to go hard. But the environment is motivating and they will urge you to push! The next 15 minutes is devoted to heavy strength. They had dumbbells up to 30lbs and urge you to lift as heavy as you'd like. I liked this part! Each person had all the weights and bench space they needed. The following two 15-minute segments had the same format. I would love to come back to Shred 4/15 on a day I want a good workout and sweat.


City: Bexley

Class Type: Yoga, Barre, Strength

Healthy Hack: Try a few of their class types using their 2 weeks for 20$ deal! This is for first time members. To redeem, head to their website and create an account. You'll purchase the 20$ pass and can plan your next two weeks of movement!


I really enjoyed what this studio had to offer. My first class was a combination of yoga, barre and strength! It felt like a giant party full of females ready to move sweat and have fun. Since that class, I tried two additional yoga classes. Each class was well taught using vinyasa poses, a bit of slow burn, and stretching towards the end. I always enjoy when instructors cue proper breath with movement; Be Well Studio didn't disappoint.

Trails, Parks + Great Outdoors

City: Westerville

Outdoor Type: Gardens, trails, hiking, kids educational programs

Healthy Hack: If you want to go on a walk, meditate or simply be with nature without the hassle of hiking, Inniswoods is your spot. You don't need structured workouts or hikes to get your fill of nature!

Unfortunately, Inniswoods technically does not allow dogs. I did not know this until after this photo.. but I was stopped twice while being at this metro park. Do yourself a favor, and leave the fur pups at home! Inniswoods is filled with gardens and small trails. It was perfect for my little legged boys to get their exercise in! The trails are fun and easy; picture boardwalks or gravel trails that all lead to the center of the metro park. If you get lost, just keep walking and you'll find yourself at the entrance again. The gardens are full of ponds, medicinal herbs, culinary herbs, rose gardens.. and so much more! It's so beautiful and very taken care of. My husband and I came back to this metro park the following week and found a kids section that both him and I enjoyed just as much!


City: Lewis Center

Outdoor Type: hiking, boating, mountain biking, fishing

Healthy Hack: Research the trails you want to hike or bike before setting out for departure. This state park is huge and we were a bit lost before deciding to hike versus bike!

Alum Creek State Park is a huge park north of Westerville. It resides along a dam and of course the Alum Creek River. We started the journey by bike and quickly realized we weren't going to survive this mountain biking excursion. After re-racking the bikes, we headed towards the Rocks and Rims trail (south loop). My neighbors told us of how awesome this trail was, so we were eager to get into nature! I'd rate the difficulty of this trail a 6/10; not terrible by all means. You have the river, tons of trees, creeks, and lots of nature all around! I highly recommend this trail is you're up for a long hike through the woods!


Events

City: Dublin

What: PGA Tournament

Healthy Hack: Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! This day was smokin' hot and I chugged 3 large water bottles while walking the 18 holes.

My husband and I absolutely loved this event held each year at Murfield. We watched over 20 golfers, some of which being the biggest names in the world, compete on the course. I am not a golfer myself, but give me a hot summer day and outdoor sports and I am in! We will absolutely make this a yearly tradition. For my fellow health nuts, I have no comments or feedback of food or drinks at the Memorial. I ate before arriving and ended up drinking only water the entire day. It was hot this particular weekend, so, be sure to hydrate!


City: Columbus

What: 21+ Event held at Columbus Center Of Science Institute.

Healthy Hack: When eating at this event, look over what the menus have and get in the right line! For us, there were two lines with different offerings. I wanted the jerk chicken wings and realized I was standing in the wrong line!

Cosi After Dark was so much fun. Each month, Cosi holds a themed night for adults to come, drink, eat, and be a kid again! We participated in the June event which was King Tut themed. We learned so much about the Egyptian history behind King Tut and how they found his tomb. Cosi sells themed dinner as well; entrees link jerk chicken and walking shawarma were on the menu. Lastly, they have a fair amount of alcohol both cocktails, wine and beer. It's easy to over-do it here because of how distracted you are going through the exhibits so, be cautious to drink water too!









Businesses

City: Gahanna

What: Nail Studio

Why I love Glow: My nails last so long after getting the traditional manicure with gel. I am sure healthier alternatives would beat gel polish, but I need something that lasts through weight lifting and using my hands all day. Also, ask for Hannah! :)


My nails stay perfectly polished for 2+ weeks after going to GLOW. I have been to this little nail studio since moving and I keep returning! No other nail studio has given my nails a manicure that actually lasts quite like GLOW. I had to shout them out in this blog post, because it is my go-to spot!


The nails above are my real nails after a gel, classic manicure. I chose a fun "midnight themed" color for the Taylor Swift concert!


Paloma

City: Grandview

What: Lymphatic Drainage Massage- Lower Body

Why I Love Paloma: I love Paloma because of the incredible offerings, massage therapists, and the "vibe". This spa is full of crystals and healing energy! You have to go to experience its' full magic!


I have gone to Paloma many times now; however, this month I tried the Lymphatic Drainage Massage. It was interesting to say the least! The therapist took me into my massage room and settled me into a lower body suit that was zipped up firmly around my legs. It reached my rib cage and my upper body was free. While lying on the bed, this device would squeeze my lower body and abdominals and slowly release. This practice helps with drainage, decreasing inflammation and decreasing bloating.


The process of this massage wasn't super relaxing nor fun; after being squeezed for the first ten minutes I quickly got use to the machine and fell asleep to the music coming from my headphones. What I can say positively about the massage was the after-results. I noticed my legs were much "tighter looking" and not swollen. This affect lasted about a week; my thighs and glutes fit a bit looser in my biker shorts simply because of the drainage they encountered (this is not a weight loss nor fat loss tool). I was pleasantly surprised by this after feeling like this massage was somewhat strange.




Thanks for tuning in to June's fun, fitness-filled recap! I enjoy encouraging local Columbus community members to participate, be active and get outside as much as possible! I'll continue these monthly recaps and would love to hear feedback if you try any of these restaurants or businesses!

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