Bend Active

Sunday Shoutout & Fitness Spotlight [Rachel Wilson, barre-OM]

Fit Spotlight title

I met up with Rachel last week for coffee (well, I got coffee, she got a smoothie) and got to talk to her  Wilson-12-(ZF-2689-65626-1-011)about yoga, barre and all things sweaty! I loved how friendly and down to earth she was. She had me laughing during the entire interview and I’m excited to take one of her upcoming classes.  Here is a glimpse at Rachel Wilson, founder of the barre-OM method.

Expertise:  Rachel moved to Columbus in 2013 and hit the ground running on the fitness scene.  We could impress you with a list of accolades she has accomplished during her ‘day jobs’  ~  teaching, law, volunteerism ~ but we’ll keep her accomplishments fitness related since this is a fitness blog!  You can read more about Rachel’s notable law & teaching background HERE.

Although Rachel is highly accomplished in many fields, her passion and calling is health & wellness. She holds many fitness certifications including Lagree Fitness, Indoor Cycling [Schwinn] and a Yoga Certification [Yoga Alliance, RYT 200].  She was also originally certified through B. Fit Barre in DC, and has now become the founder of her own method, barre-OM [keep reading for more info!].  She teaches at several boutique fitness studios around Columbus including PAI Yoga & Fitness, The Butcher Shop Fitness, Grow Yoga, Replenish:  the spa co-op and one of our local favorites, the apparel store, Bend Active.  Grow Yoga states, “Rachel strives to make her vinyasa classes challenging, playful, and inspiring, with the ultimate hope that everyone leaves her classes with a smile.”  You can visit her full bio on Grow Yoga’s website HERE.

Q & A’s with Rachel

Why do you live a FIT life?

I come from a family of athletes and coaches who love sports and I grew up playing volleyball, basketball and running track.  I played Division I basketball at the University of Pennsylvania and over time, injuries led me to pursue lower impact fitness options.  Exercise allows me to feel like myself; peaceful, strong, healthy, and happy.  I feel like I’m my best self when I’m doing yoga – its my moving meditation.

What’s your diet/fuel look like?

High protein, low carb. I love green smoothies & raw juices (has own juicer at home).

Why did you want to become a fitness instructor?

After falling in love with barre during law school, I wanted to become an instructor for several reasons.  My body changed significantly after taking barre regularly for several months and I want other people to see that they too can change their bodies in significant part by adding barre fitness to their routines.  I want women to realize that you can be strong and fit, even though you may not necessarily be a size 2. I also yearn to share my love of barre and fitness generally with people of all shapes, ages, races, fitness levels, cultures and experiences.   I hope to add greater diversity to the barre and yoga communities in Columbus, Ohio, and elsewhere as well.

Also, there is no greater feeling than witnessing a client having a breakthrough.  There are moments in class when I can see clients mentally deciding whether they will give up or if they will keep fighting to stay in the position, to allow their legs to tremble uncontrollably, and to endure the burning sensation they are feeling during what some might call “controlled muscle failure.”  Every single time that a client makes a decision to fight, to continue to push themselves, it is awe-inspiring, humbling, and motivating.  I want clients to realize that if they can be comfortable being uncomfortable in barre class, they can endure and thrive in challenging situations in everyday life as well.


Tell me about barre-OM?  I’ve heard great things, what’s all the buzz about?

Barre-OM is a fusion of my two passions – yoga and barre.  Its unique in several ways;

  1. Yoga inspired. Barre-OM gives you lots of traditional barre exercises which consist of small isometric movements, but also combines other techniques and benefits that yogis love.
  2. Offers modifications for all skill levels, injuries, pregnancy, etc. Everyone’s body is different & barre-OM allows them to practice safely and effectively.
  3. Anatomical explanations provided.  People deserve to know how each movement is benefiting their body!
  4. Class is challenging, but fun.  You’ll get in a great workout and leave sweaty & happy!
  5. Sense of community. I enjoy getting to know clients and helping them connect with each other.

I teach barre-OM myself, as well as license it to various yoga studios (currently offered at PAI Dublin, PAI Gahanna (soon), Replenish, Bend Active and Detroit Barre).

Rachel barre

Some of Rachel’s Favorite Things

  • Favorite ways to sweat: Vinyasa & Bikram [yoga], Lagree, Barre, Spinning
  • Favorite yoga pose:  Half moon – strength, balance, focus, openness
  • Favorite FIT place(s) around Columbus: Grow, PAI, Butcher Shop, Cycle 614, Bikram Hot Yoga Columbus, Replenish: the spa co-op
  • Favorite cheat meal: any kind of pasta
  • Favorite music – Beyonce. Period.

Anything else we should know about you?

I LOVE watching the NFL! My cousin is the QB for the Seahawks, so of course, that’s my team!

Can’t wait to try a class!  Where can we find you?

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Rachel lives near downtown Columbus and recently got engaged.  I look forward to taking her classes, sweatin’ it out to some Beyonce and hearing about the wedding plans!  


Photos courtesy of Rachel Wilson

Week FIVE of our Living Fit Winter Challenge

You made it half way through the challenge!

Week 4 …

  • Log your points sometime soon ~ Remember, $50 in Bend Active gift cards are at stake!  Winners will be announced early this week.  Make sure to LIKE Living Fit & Bend on Facebook.
  • AWESOME JOB on all the miles this week!  15 miles per week is a good push during winter/off training months.  Pat yourself on the back and log your total mileage [Google Drive] so we can see how much pavement we accumulated!

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Week 5…

  • Week five bonus challenges… ITS DOUBLE BONUS CHALLENGE WEEK!!!  That means you can earn 100 points instead of the usual 50! Pick TWO – each is worth 50 points…
    1. Log 200 minutes of yoga or 200 minutes [approx 20 miles] of running.  Or combination of both.  You can do it!
    2. Attend a FIT event OR a new FIT studio/gym.  Remember Fair Trade Yoga’s open house is today and next Sat is a yoga day, we can try a new place.
    3. Prepare your FIT and personal 2015 goal setting and resolutions!  Get them to Teresa somehow by Jan 15 so we can do a blog post.

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  • Inspiration points are also double.  This week, you must post to social media to count your inspiration points each day.  Pick your fav ~ FB, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest… 10 points per day for posting whatever you choose; photo of your sweat session, inspirational quotes, bucket list/resolution items, favorite workout, clean eating ideas… you name it!  Remember to use #livingfitcolumbus on Instagram 🙂
  • We officially have an Instagram account ~ please follow us @LivingFitColumbus [right now we are pretty lame!] and also continue using #livingfitcolumbus

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Other news

  • Email us @ for more info or to share ideas ~ we are considering a blog overhall in January and would love your input.
  • A few of us are heading to the Open House today for Fair Trade Yoga Studios in Powell around 2:30PM, see flyers below.  This fits one of the bonus options for this week – 50 points woo hoo!

Can’t wait to see those FIT goals! Happy 2015!

Midweek Shoutout [Fair Trade Yoga Studio]

Fair Trade Yoga Studio | Powell, Ohio

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We first met Sherry Hoff, owner of the new yoga studio FAIR TRADE YOGA, at our Run+Yoga event at Bend Active a few weeks back.  She kindly donated her time to offer a yoga session after our 3-4 mile run!

Bend Run Yoga-6Living Fit Columbus Run+Yoga Event @ Bend Active, Dec 2014

I then caught up with Sherry at her soon-to-open studio in Powell.  She showed me around and shared her goals, vision & grand plans for offering fitness classes in her new space.  She was still finishing up some construction and decorating, but here is a quick look…

Fair Trade Yoga-4Her logo… the outdoor sign wasn’t up yet

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Reception area ~ yogis can check in, store personal items and eventually purchase hydration & apparel

Fair Trade Yoga-1-2Where the magic sweat happens! 

Sherry’s style and studio will offer a variety of yoga techniques and classes.  On her website she states, “I offer specialized Yogic plans for all people. There are many paths of Yoga to explore and two of the most common ways to begin a personal practice are through the physical practice (Asanas) or through Meditation Yoga (Raja). I bring both of these together, to create and teach a holistic approach to the mind and body!” 

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Fair Trade will offer a variety of classes including heated [85-95 degrees], Power Vinyasa, Ashtanga, Slow Flow, Restorative, Guided Meditation and even kids’ classes.

I also got to meet up with Rachel Kerr, owner of The Beauty Barre [over coffee, of course!]  She is a super sweet yogi, deserving of her own blog post all together [stay tuned!]  Rachel will be teaching at Fair Trade and offers a power vinyasa style.  She likes a fun, powerful workout, upbeat music and encourages you to sweat, sweat, sweat!  Looking forward to taking her class and getting to know more about The Beauty Barre in 2015.

Screen Shot 2014-12-31 at 3.43.36 PMRachel Kerr, yoga instructor & Beauty Barre founder [Photo credit to]

Grand Opening Info

Fair Trade Yoga Studios has its Grand Opening Event this Sunday, January 4th from 1-4PM. The studio is located @ 36 North Liberty Street, Powell, OH 43065.

Why should you come?  Screen Shot 2014-12-31 at 4.19.46 PM

  • live music
  • refreshments
  • discounted products and apparel from local vendors
  • sample/purchase Bend Active‘s new Columbus Legging [partnered with 614 Magazine & FIT Columbus]
  • giveaways & door prizes ~ one lucky yogi will win free yoga for ONE FULL YEAR!
  • Living Fit Columbus peeps participating in our #LFCwinterchallenge will earn week 5 challenge points for attending [anyone up for a group run?!]

To RSVP to the event [and be entered in the giveaways] email Sherry @


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We took our first Vinyasa flow class with Sherry on a Saturday morning in January [2015].  It was a great class and we hope to return many times.  There is even a jogging trail nearby, so a run+yoga day perhaps?


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Giveaway ~ LFC Winter Challenge Week #4

Great news!

Bend Active has offered to donate two $25 gift cards for week 4, the midway point of our LFC Winter Challenge!

All you need to do to be eligible is these three things…
  1. ​Have logged all points from weeks 1-3
  2. Log a minimum of 150 points this week (week 4)
  3. ​LIKE both Bend Active and Living Fit Columbus on FB
That’s it!

Winners will be drawn at random next week, so get your liking and logging on!!


Holiday/Christmas wish lists

Okay so maybe we waited too long to post this because HOPEFULLY your holiday shopping is coming to an end (its 2PM on Christmas Eve!)  Regardless, here are the top FIT items we had on our wish lists so we wanted to share them with our readers…

  1. Legwarmers & tall socks ~ since we basically live in our yoga pants, these not only are comfy, but make a stylish statement too!  Freepeople has some great options… or even your local Kohl’s or Target.
  2. Athletic vest ~ puffer please!  lululemon and Northface have great athletic models, but more affordable options can be found in lots of places, including Old Navy.
  3. lululemon athletica vinyasa scarf ~ so many uses!
  4. Boat neck sweatshirts ~ great for throwing over your sweaty athletic clothes to keep you warm after a session, or just lounging around in. As Bend says, fitness meets fashion!
  5. The mat.  If you do hot yoga, there really is no better mat out there!
  6. lululemon hot cheeks shorts ~ Lan likes to layer and cover her booty on cold winter runs… but still, of course, look cute!
  7. Leggings.  Who couldn’t use another pair of leggings?  Maybe you want to make a BOLD statement and get Robert Sturman/Bend Active’s Italy or Prayer Flag leggings.  Or maybe you’re more subtle… some of our favorite basic black leggings include lululemon’s run crop or wunder unders and Bend Active’s leela leggings.
  8. Stocking stuffers like Honey Stingers, gloves, running headbands, headphones, juice bar giftcards, running socks (Balega is one of the best!) ~ anything that will fit!  And maybe a Starbucks or Winans giftcard… we deserve a little chocolate or coffee after a long run!
  9. Fitness passes ~ think yoga class passes, yoga retreat, race entries, etc.
  10. Running inspiration; subscription to Runner’s World magazine or maybe an iTunes giftcard to update our running playlist.

You can also check out lululemon’s gift guides for more ideas!

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Thanks for checking in!  Hope you have a wonderful Christmas Eve (or whatever you celebrate!)

Merry FIT-mas!!!!

Run+Yoga event @ Bend Active [Tour of Columbus]


Our Living Fit Columbus runners kicked off our winter fitness challenge & met up with Bend Active this morning for a fun RUN + YOGA event.  A big thanks to Bend, Fair Trade Yoga, Samba Fresh, Living Fit runners and all the other sponsors & participants that made today fun!  Great sweating with all these pretty faces!


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Fitness challenge & Bend Active Grand Opening!

We are excited to announce a mini run/yoga event at Bend Active‘s new store this Sunday to kickoff our Living Fit Winter Challenge & Bend Active’s Grand Opening!  Bend-3

When: Sunday, Dec 7th 11AM-12:30PM
Where: Bend Active, The Shoppes on Lane Ave, 1595 Lane Ave, Upper Arlington, 43221

  • Enter the Living Fit Winter Challenge
    • You do NOT have to be present at this event to join our challenge ~ however, you earn week 1 bonus points for attending and will be given a brief overview of challenge details
    • You DO have to attend at least one group activity during the 8 week challenge to be eligible for prizes
    • You can check out the leaderboard from last year’s challenge HERE
  • 20-30 min run starting and ending at Bend Active’s new Lane Ave location
  • 20-30 min vinyasa yoga session [post-run] lead by Sherry Hoff of Fair Trade Yoga Studio
  • Enter a raffle for items from Bend Active and Fair Trade Yoga Studio




Come for the run, the yoga, the goodies, the photos or all of the above! 

Hope to see you there!

A fun FIT weekend!

Weekends fly by around here.  The hustle and bustle of the 40-50 hour work weeks may slow down, but we have families, Thanksgiving prep, house cleaning… and of course have to make time for some fit activities!

For the winter months we’ve decided to alternate our Saturdays with runs and yoga [see our schedule HERE].  Yesterday was a RUN day and although the original plan was for 9AM, the cold and ice around Columbus caused us to postpone.  We decided to meet at 2:00 in the afternoon yesterday and got in a much needed run, most of us doing 4 miles and Lan logging a whopping 12.5!

Today we headed to lululemon polaris to take advantage of their complimentary class, hosted by our all time favorite yoga studio, Harbor Yoga.  The class was taught by Meg, an instructor I’d never met before.  We chatted with her a minute after class, thanked her and naturally talked to her about running.  She was quite humble, just stating that she couldn’t run anymore.  After checking out her bio, we now know why!

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photo(3)Lan rocking her half moon… notice the cute vests in the background


Closeup of the vests.  Christmas list perhaps? 

We then headed to Bend Active’s new store on Lane Avenue.  We’ve mentioned Bend in a previous post and are excited to work with them on some fun FIT projects in the future.  More on their new store & events coming soon!


The Italy Pant, by the one and only Robert Sturman & Bend Active

Love when a weekend involves some fit time with Living Fit Columbus friends.  Check back soon for updates on Bend, Living Fit events and our upcoming post on our Christmas wish list!

Photo credits & info… the pics in the post were all taken with Teresa’s four year old iPhone 4.  December purchases will include the new iPhone 6 ~ Can’t wait to get ahold of this awesome, updated camera phone!!  DEAR SANTA text credit to