Taking a hike + NEW Stretch Playlist

Sometimes it just feels good to get outside.

Bell in the grass

More night flights for the Pilot, and Liv was hit with a bug plus the teething monster. One morning, after spending 4 hours snuggling and trying to comfort the inconsolable, the Pilot woke up, came downstairs, and I asked him if he’d watch Livi while I took a zone-out break. I’m usually not good at asking for help, but I eventually learned that it’s silly to not reach out to others if I need it. I originally had a run in mind, but since Liv wasn’t feeling well, I wasn’t about to take her in the jogging stroller and the Pilot had to leave for work soon. So instead, I went for a walk.

I did the two-mile loop with a beautiful view, my Pandora top hits station blasting, and the weather was perfection: 75 degrees.


It was a trail walk with some interesting sights:

Prayer tent


and a pretty steep incline!


The view from the top:


When I got home, I felt refreshed and energized, and Livi and I enjoyed the rest of the day together. We laid low at home, and thankfully she’s feeling much better.

Whenever I start to feel wound up, stressed, or mentally drained, there are a few favorite remedies:

-a long, hot shower

-a run or sweaty cardio session

-a yoga class

-a good stretch with some good music

I recently refreshed my stretch playlist since I’ve been teaching a lot of stretch classes. Since it’s been a while since I’ve posted a playlist, I figured it was worth a share.

Stretch playlist

The songs:

Yep, the Bieber even made an appearance πŸ™‚

When you’re feeling overwhelmed or stressed, what’s your favorite remedy? Any relaxing music you especially love?

Hope you have a wonderful morning!

See ya after work.



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  1. kaylie on March 27, 2013 at 10:52 am

    i was super wound up yesterday while trying to fall asleep, so i listened to aqualung… i felt my shoulders relax immediately πŸ™‚

  2. Ali on March 27, 2013 at 10:57 am

    Oh how I miss the sun! And tank tops! And the desert! And being outside! I hope spring comes soon here.

    If I’m stressed, I often take a nap or talk to someone. It’s usually good for me to get some perspective from someone. If I’m overwhelmed at work, it’s better for me to just power through, take everything project by project and just get it done rather than dwell on how much I have to do. If I’m overwhelmed personally, it’s a nap or a walk sans music or podcasts! πŸ™‚

  3. Sarah @ Yogi in Action on March 27, 2013 at 10:58 am

    Crazy- I just blogged this morning about how I’ve been grumpy and trying to get into a better mood- which has some similarities to this post. There must be something in the air!

    I love to listen to Sigur Ros to relax too- it’s beautiful and doesn’t have a lot of singing (and the singing is in a different language) so I can fall asleep to it. Highly recommend!

  4. Lisa on March 27, 2013 at 11:00 am

    Totally agree with getting outdoors. Lately, in the afternoon instead of resting on the couch, I’ve been making an effort to getting outdoors and doing some walking, thinking, and reflecting. Especially with Spring here now, there are no excuses to not get a little Vitamin D:)
    When I’m stressed, I definitely love baths with candles, painting my nails, doing my hair, reading a book, or walking, oh and meditation is always a winner.

  5. Megan on March 27, 2013 at 12:19 pm

    Hi, Can you recommend a good stretching workout? I have been having major problems with plantar facitis and my calves being extremly tight, so far I’m not finding much that is helping…

    • Adrienne on March 27, 2013 at 2:14 pm

      Foam roller for your calves and use a tennis ball to roll out your arches!

      • Megan on March 29, 2013 at 8:52 am

        THanks Adrienne, I have been trying both of those but maybe not enough? I really need to get back on the excerise bandwagon but I dont want to injur myself!

  6. Deena on March 27, 2013 at 12:22 pm

    This is a song I find so happy and uplifting that it is on my workout playlist: “Ocean” by John Butler Trio. But, because there are a few versions of it, my *favorite* is the one that comes up first if you search for it on Spotify. It is seriously amazing…and perfect for a morning hike, for sure!

    Love your pictures and the playlist! Thanks!

  7. Sarahf on March 27, 2013 at 12:29 pm

    I had a good cry this evening. Feel so much better for it!

  8. Catherine on March 27, 2013 at 12:38 pm

    A solo dance party in my apartment usually helps, but the best case scenario is going to see a movie alone if I can steal away for that much time!

    I also perk right up when I listen to showtunes – Hello Dolly has magic power on my mood. πŸ™‚

  9. Ashley @ Life and Fitness on March 27, 2013 at 1:18 pm

    It can be hard admitting when you need a break. My favorite way to zone out is to get some fresh air in the sun or read a book.

  10. Sara on March 27, 2013 at 1:35 pm

    I am a very new reader of your blog, like just today, and where you live looks beautiful! I am so jealous, I go for walk right now and its dead trees and snow, Blah. My remedy is watching a Bruins or Red Sox game, and how I have been working on my fitness, going for a run!

    Sara πŸ™‚

  11. Chelsea on March 27, 2013 at 1:44 pm

    Thanks for the great playlist! I’ve been looking for something to play that’s not so “pumping cardio” when I’m doing my cool down/stretching at the gym, and this is a perfect combo. πŸ™‚ I love taking walks when I’m stressed, but for those five months out of the year or so when it’s just too cold, usually a good bath and a new magazine will help take my mind off things!

  12. Ashley on March 27, 2013 at 1:52 pm

    Solid playlist! My chill playlists always mix some U2 (In a little while is a staple) and Simon and Garfunkel because I’m old fashioned like that.

  13. Emily on March 27, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    I am obsessed with”Hey Hey Hey” by Michael Franti and the Spearhead. Cardio, stretching, waking up, going to bed, and just dancing in the living room.

  14. Kathleen@ New Version of Me on March 27, 2013 at 3:01 pm

    Getting outside, working out, and reading totally recharge me! Sometimes you just need alone time!

  15. Cristal on March 27, 2013 at 3:22 pm

    Hi Gina,
    I have a strength question. I wasn’t able to fit in my entire strength routine at one time today. I ended up doing 2 sets of 2 moves at a time for a total of 8 moves throughout the day. Does this have the same benefits as doing all 8 moves at once? Also, I am repeating the WSU week 1 and was wondering what the Speed Surge was.

    • Fitnessista on March 28, 2013 at 2:01 am

      are you still fatiguing the muscles? if so, then yes!
      you’ll just increase your speed (to an uncomfortable point) in the middle of your workout. hold it there for at least 3-5 minutes

      • Cristal on March 28, 2013 at 7:48 pm


  16. Erin @ Axell's Kitchen on March 27, 2013 at 3:33 pm

    How cool is that teepee!?!

  17. Ali @ Peaches and Football on March 27, 2013 at 3:41 pm

    I want to be like Bella and roll around in the grass and sunshine. Ahh if only it were 75 here!! πŸ™‚

    I really liked the music they play when I get facials, and since that’s a rare and luxurious treat – the music naturally relaxes me since I associate it with the relaxation and pampering. On the other side of the spectrum, sometimes when I feel totally overwhelmed and stressed, I just need to tackle something. If I sit and relax or walk away, I often feel like I should have been doing something and find if I just take a quick project and cross it off the list, I can better enjoy a break later on and really relax.

  18. Sonja on March 27, 2013 at 3:52 pm

    Hi Gina,

    I read your blog for quite some time now and I love it! Reason why I finally dared to write you is because I just found a short article about your site in the GERMAN SHAPE MAGAZINE! It was a really nice surprise! If by any chance you had no idea please let me know as I can send you a photo of it!

    Keep up the good work!


  19. Lucie@SwissFitChick on March 27, 2013 at 4:09 pm

    Oh poor Liv! Glad she feels better now. I love a sweaty Cardio session when I need to clear my head or getting out of the zone. A run with a rocking playlist or elliptical, spinning bike – doesn’t matter. Or a stretching/foam rolling/Yoga session with my 2 favorite CD’s : Gothan Project ‘La Revancha del Tango’ (I can SO recommend that) or Cafe del Mar ‘Vue Mer’ – healing!!

  20. Allison @ Train Eat Repeat on March 27, 2013 at 4:46 pm

    a walk with scenery like that would make me feel better any day! unfortunately, we have a lot of snow and no cactus’… ah well!
    But when I’m stressed, a nice walk, hot shower or just blasting some good tunes helps. And a nap!

  21. Sam @ Better With Sprinkles on March 27, 2013 at 5:05 pm

    I can’t wait until the weather improves a little bit around here…I’m excited to start getting some walks in again! I love just picking up a trashy magazine or book for some destressing.

  22. Kim on March 27, 2013 at 5:22 pm

    I can’t wait until we start having 75+ temps. I’m like you – it is really hard for me to ever ask anyone (even my husband who’s always willing) for help – glad you did and were able to have a break and recharge!

  23. Kelsey on March 27, 2013 at 6:32 pm

    bon iver is my favorite relaxing music. i heard it in yoga several years ago and was hooked!

  24. Veterinarianess on March 27, 2013 at 8:15 pm

    Running always makes me feel better πŸ™‚

  25. Erin @ Girl Gone Veggie on March 27, 2013 at 10:28 pm

    What great timing for this post! I was just feeling so incredibly stressed, and then I called my fiance and he made me feel so much better.

  26. bri @ In Love & Words on March 27, 2013 at 11:29 pm

    I’m with you, Yoga is one of my go-to stress-reducers. I have pretty bad anxiety that often results in horrible panic attacks, so I’m all about keeping stress-levels down. I do things like meditate every day and I cut out caffeine as much as possible (without giving up chocolate >_<)

    I also spend time with my sister or talk to close friends when things are getting crazy with me.

    One of my favorite calming songs is Details in the Fabric by Jason Mraz and James Morrison.

  27. Jay on March 28, 2013 at 12:00 am

    Glad Liv is better. Those times are tough. A run always works for me . . . always.

  28. Sam on March 28, 2013 at 4:12 am

    Love the playlist! I need to get into stretching more…. Im glad Liv is better πŸ™‚

  29. Erica on March 28, 2013 at 9:27 am

    A good sweat is my favourite way to de-stress and work through a lot of emotions πŸ™‚

    PS I wanted to leave a comment because I don’t know if it is just me or if others are effected as well, but my browser repeatedly says there is no site configured at the address of your main page (all others works fine). I have read your blog for over a year with zero problems but the last couple of days I’ve followed blog posts via the comments section links.

    • Fitnessista on March 28, 2013 at 10:44 am

      wow, good to know. thank you!

  30. Gina on March 28, 2013 at 2:43 pm

    That hike looked amazing!! Makes me want to move; probably also due to a touch of Spring fever. I continue to enjoy reading along; my lil guy just had 8 new teeth break through over the last month or so…it seemed like a long process. He now has 16 total!

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