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Columbus Food, Fitness + Fun: May 2023

I absolutely love the month of May! May brings warm weather, excitement for summer activities, festivals, farmers markets, and so much more! This month, Mike and I traveled a fair amount but I was still able to try a few newer restaurants and studios.


Restaurants

City: Worthington

Cuisine: Pizza

Date: May 1, 2023

Healthy Hack: Get a large house salad and add chicken! I always consume a salad with pizza so I am getting fiber and greens in. I don't eat as much pizza if I have other healthier options around!


I really liked Pies + Pints! They have a few locations around Columbus but we went to Worthington to change up the scenery. Mike and I got our own house salad (mine is pictured with no cheese or onion). The salad was huge but perfect since I only wanted one slice of pizza. We ordered half pepperoni and half mozzarella basil. The pizza was extraordinary; it absolutely exceeded my expectations. It was cheesy, saucy and didn't skimp on toppings. The classic hand tossed pizza had a wood-fired feel with crispy edges. I will absolutely come back to Pies+Pints! I also liked the amount of salads on their menu. Sometimes pizza can be tricky when trying to eat low carb or watch calories. But with a salad selection as large as Pies + Pints, you'll be sure to have healthier alternatives at your finger tips!


City: Short North Columbus

Cuisine: Mexican

Date: May 19, 2023

Healthy Hack: Bakersfield uses house-made corn tortillas, fresh ingredients and provides variety in both meat and vegetarian diets. Snag a few tacos as your main meal as none of them are rich in heavy sauces or doused in tons of cheese. They are delicate, relatively healthy and delicious!

I went to Bakersfield for the first time while still in college. I was so unaware of how cool Columbus was, and this was an eye-opening, fun restaurant! I gathered here with friends as we all ordered tacos, tried the salsa trio, and enjoyed their housemate margaritas (the best I've ever had to this day).


City: Westerville

Cuisine: BYO Sushi and Bowls

Date: May 11, 2023

Healthy Hack: There are tons of ways to personalize your bowl or sushi! I ordered a salad with double protein (ahi tuna) and loaded up on vegetables, healthy fats like avocado, and asked for the dressing on the side. There are vegetarian and meat protein options.

We got Fusian take out while on the road and it was a perfect, easy to digest dinner! I love eating healthy on the road; nothing is worse than having GI issues when in the car for hours. At Fusian, I was able to order a protein and vegetable rich bowl as well as Mike's personalized sushi.


Gyms and Fitness Studios

City: Upper Arlington

Class Type: Cycle Class, "Qweens" Ride

Date: May 2023

Healthy Hack: Cycling is a great cross-training method for runners! I love doing a cycle class when I need to do cardio but make it low-impact.

Being a retired Cycle Bar member, I was excited to go to my first ride in Columbus. I had been a class pass holder at Royal Oak Cycle Bar (Michigan) for two years. I truly enjoyed it! Instructor Jimmy was the ultimate hype man and I'd leave every class sweaty, endorphins flowing, and excited to come back for more. Unfortunately, my experience at this Cycle Bar wasn't the same.


I only took one class at this studio so I am not sure my review will give it a representation it deserves. However, this is my experience. I received a free class at this location after attending a Beauty Boost event. I hopped online to reserve bikes for three days and found I could only reserve one for free. I thought I'd just do one class and schedule in person with my physical "free week" pass. Luckily, one of the managers texted me and I was able to schedule a Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday class to try.


Tuesday morning, I woke up with a text from the same lady saying that the mornings class had been cancelled. She also said, "I'll reach out to you tomorrow to reschedule this class". Not to worry, things happen. However, I never heard from this lady again.


I showed up to Thursday's class and was expected and greeted by the front desk staff. She gave me the run down of shoes, signing in, bike set up, etc. She was extremely nice, however, she didn't understand why it appeared this wasn't my first class. I explained to her the Tuesday class had been canceled and that seemed to have been confusing so we dropped discussion. The instructor introduced himself too as well as being extremely nice. But he told me twice before the class began "Now, this class is going to be REALLY hard, so always sit down if you feel like you're doing too much.." I am not sure if he is taught to say this to everyone or if he was just saying this to me? However it made me feel very uncomfortable. Upon leaving, I was asked multiple times if this was something I see myself doing long term, etc etc etc. It was very sale-sy. I wanted to respond and say honestly no, it was rather unenjoyable and I felt judged in a strange way. But instead I hurried out and skipped the Sunday class!


City: Gahanna

Class Type: Open gym

Date: May 2023

Healthy Hack: Wipe down all the equipment here before using it! It was so gross to have actual dirt come off and stick on my arms and neck.


I have no redeeming photos of ESPORTA to provide, but lots of feedback. I am able to use ESPORTA as it belongs to the gym selection in GYMPASS. My husband and I both have GYMPASS as a perk through his work; it allows us to go to gyms throughout the area. We can use this anytime we're traveling too, which is helpful!


ESPORTA was once LA Fitness before they were bought out. I can't say they have improved in quality and experience. I've tried the Gahanna location three times. The first time was a long run when it was raining outside. The treadmill worked fine, and I had no complaints about the experience. As you walk through the gym, there are some funky features like a movie theater room full of cardio. I guess if you plan to do an elliptical for two hours, you could watch your favorite movie on the. big screen. The main floor has a basketball court, however they converted it into a circuit based training area.


The last time I went to ESPORTA, I was incredibly disappointed. I went to use the elliptical for cross training and get a lift in. As I made my way upstairs, I realized there was no air in the gym. I probably lost 5lbs of sweat during that elliptical session. None the less, I made my way to one of their two "squat racks" if you want to even call it that. Half way through, I noticed dirt on both my arms. Dirt, like I was gardening kind of dirt. I realized it was from the barbell. As I look all over my clothes and body, the barbell got disgusting dirt all over me! That's when I was really turned off. I grabbed a spray bottle and rubbed the barbell down and left.


Trails, Parks + Outdoors

Goodale Park

City: Downtown Columbus

Terrain: Paved sidewalks with open grass areas

Activity: Walking and Meditating

Goodale Park is not a big park by all means, but I was rather surprised at how much I enjoyed meditating here before yoga. This park pops up right downtown, a street off the short north. There's a big pond, plenty of benches, and open grass area to run dogs or kids. I really liked meditating here as it was quiet and had just enough activity to "people watch" without the feeling of busy-ness. I highly recommend stopping by if you're in the area to enjoy a coffee or read a book!


Events

Taco Fest

City: Scioto Mile

Event Details: taco food trucks gather downtown with bands and community

Date: May 2023

Healthy Hack: Scope out the food trucks and look for options that fit your dietary needs! I found Taco Nice, which served protein-rich tacos and bowls. I was able to customize my bowl by asking for no onions, etc!

I am no newbie to taco fest! This being said, I knew exactly what to expect. LINES. PEOPLE. TACOS.

Here's the rules to the road when it comes to enjoying Columbus's many festivals:


1) arrive earlier than you want to eat (we arrived at 4, ate around 5:45)


2) divide and conquer! I chose one food truck and ordered for both Mike and I. Mike did the same thing so we could try two food trucks.


3) walk the entire strip before deciding on what food trucks to hit up. I looked for food trucks I recognized and had healthiest-options; where as Mike looked for food trucks he did not recognize.


4) Mike's food truck took way longer than mine did (30 minutes versus an hour), so be sure to plan if you're going to wait and feast together or grub as you go. I wasn't starving, so I enjoyed the live music and waited til Mike arrived with his food.


I must shoutout Taco Nice. This was the food truck I waited for and it did not disappoint! I snagged two tacos, chips, salsa, and a chicken bowl. My chicken bowl was absolutely fabulous full of rice, beans, chicken, peppers, a bit of cheese and dollop of guacamole.


Chaturanga Workshop at YOHI

City: Short North, YOHI

Class Type: Connoting Education workshop at Yoga On High

Date: May 2023

Healthy Hack: Sign up for continuing education courses at YOHI even if you aren't a registered teacher! This class was very informative to improve form on one of the most common yoga sequences and would help anyone who regularly practices.


I love yoga workshops; especially those that count towards my continuing education! Yoga on High has been an absolute treat for me to discover. Specifically, I have taken two classes with Anne as well as participated in this workshop. Her work and education is exceptional, her classes challenging, all the while keeping the traditional practice of yoga alive.


This workshop was two hours on a Sunday and featured education around anatomy of the spine, the shoulder girdle, and the chest. After talking muscles, we practiced how to engage them with different poses like cobra and sphinx. Following the primers, we practiced proper form and partnered up with other students to have multiple eyes. Already, I cannot wait to return for another CEU workshop. This counted as two contact hours and was already registered in the Yoga Alliance website.


Businesses

City: New Albany

Business: Mani's and Pedi's

Date: May 2023

I have tried many W Nail bar locations, but this was my first time at New Albany. I'll be honest, the only reason I came back to The W was because I had a 10$ discount card. Unfortunately, every other time I've gotten gel or gel-x done at the W, they chip within the week. So my expectations were rather low before even walking in.


Originally, I had booked the traditional manicure with gel but after discussing it with the nail tech I decided to add on the CBD/massage extension. Truthfully, I just wanted to relax and having a massage sounded nice. My nail tech was absolutely adorable and did a fabulous job on my nails and cuticles. The CBD felt incredible and the cream made my hands extremely soft. These nails lasted exactly 7 days before the gel began to peel. I am not sure why this happens only at The W, but it does. However, my nails looked pretty dang good for the following 7 days! Also, the nail bar is very aesthetic. This place would be a perfect spot to go with girlfriends on a spa-date!


That's a wrap!

Like I said, May was a busy travel month for us! I look forward to trying more healthy restaurants and classes next month and can't wait to share with you my adventures!



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