Legacy Workout joins Rock Camp! for Girls

Andia Winslow and Monique Walton, Creators of Legacy Workout, join Willie Mae Rock Camp for Girls ® as ancillary workshop facilitators: “Cinematic wellness movement” founders featured as contributors for youth summer camp that celebrates artistic expression, social justice & empowerment 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

NEW YORK, NY (August 18, 2015)

Joining musicians, activists and educators, Monique Walton and Andia Winslow announced today that on Wednesday, August 19th they will present Legacy Workout curriculum to attendees of Girls Rock! Camp a major initiative of non-profit gender justice organization Willie Mae Rock Camp for Girls ® based in New York City.

Celebrating it’s 10th year of creatively educating campers ages 8-18, the award-winning Girls Rock! Camp not only provides daily instrument instruction and band practice but also ancillary workshop tracks that allow attendees to engage more intensively with themes central to the organization’s mission. In the Movement & Body Care Track, “we’ll learn how to celebrate our bodies rather than think negatively about them. We’ll practice being active, being whole and caring for ourselves” says Program and Communications Director Gracie Aghapour.

In 2014, on the eve of the 50th Anniversary of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Andia and Monique created a short film in which each historical character was paired with a physical fitness manifestation. The multidisciplinary project sought to pay homage while educating muscle and mind through kinetic storytelling. Following it’s public debut at the ImageNation Cinema Foundation Belletrix exhibit and New York Women in Film and Television panel discussion, Legacy Workout received acclaim and was featured by Colorlines, xoJane, Well+Good, Daily Burn and Brooklyn Independent Media. Of the work, Oscar nominated Director Ava DuVernay wrote, “Whoa. This is brilliant to me. Will speak to some of us loudly and clearly. Brava!”

Legacy Workout encourages reflection of purpose that celebrates self-care yet simultaneously goes beyond the physical self. “We understand how girls, women (transgender and cisgender) and gender non-binary peoples’ bodies are often undervalued, shamed and targeted. At Girls Rock! Camp, we’re honored to have Andia & Monique offering an empowering and fun way to fight against that” explains Aghapour.

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About Willie Mae Rock Camp for Girls Founded in 2004, the non-profit music and mentoring program is named after Willie Mae “Big Mama” Thornton, a blues and rock performer/songwriter who was one of the first women to play the music that came to be known as “rock n’ roll.” The organization brings together girls and women from diverse communities and encourages them to explore self-expression through music, hone their critical thinking skills, build meaningful alliances with other girls and women, develop confidence in making healthy choices in their lives, and effect positive change in their communities and in the world. Willie Mae Rock Camp for Girls operates a summer day camp, after school programs, and community events in New York City. www.williemaerockcamp.org

About Legacy Workout Choreographed in 2014, Legacy Workout is a multidisciplinary fitness, film and education project dedicated to honoring “legacy makers.” Those who used, and continue to use, their physical bodies and bodies of work to address crises, combat injustice and affect global and historic change. It was created by the Founders of The Fit Cycle, a cinematic wellness movement that works to inspire people from all walks of life to live more active and engaged lives. www.LegacyWorkout.com

For inquiries and booking, please contact Press at: TheLegacyWorkout@gmail.com

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10 Ways To Maximize Your SXSW Experience

The SXSW Interactive Festival is an amazing experience that you won’t soon forget. The following are cues to maximize your on-the-ground resources and minimize the “could have, would have, should have!” Adventure is near the beginning of the dictionary, and that is where this story will start too. Let’s look at it from a sports perspective.

Pre-Game:

  • Prepare your game plan by downloading the official SXSW App for your mobile devices and peruse all scheduled offerings – both official and “un-official” events. Next, strategize which are “Must Attend,” “Maybe” and “Hey, I’m curious.” RSVP in advance for events, talks and parties if required. But remember, sometimes plans don’t pan out and opportunities that you hadn’t expected present themselves. Game-time decisions are for the bold, just do it!
  • Organize your roster of teammates, coaches and subs. Are you traveling with a group? Set up “group text” to build a community around you and maximize intel. Make a list (or several) of people/businesses whom you want to meet and pre-schedule face-to-face time if possible.  Take advantage of mentorship sessions offered by industry leaders and have your pitch and questions prepared. Follow Twitter handles and hashtags of folks and/or trends you’re interested in, you just might “street meet.”

  • The “Go-Bag” is  a must for organized players. In it, consider including: business cards, a Sharpie (permanent marker), and a Mophie self-charging cell phone case or mobile power station (you can bet the provided charging stations and outlets will have long lines). Always have at least 3 pens. You’ll lose one, you’ll let someone borrow another, and that will leave you with your one and only. A protein bar, —or a zip-lock bag full of almonds or other non-perishable protein foodstuffs— bottle of water and breath mints. Hand sanitzer — hopefully you’ll be shaking a lot of hands.
  • Rest and recovery. You won’t get much when you touch down to Austin so organize your sleep schedule to include less hours per night. Start tonight.

Game Day(s):

  • Comfortable trumps cute. But comfortable and dapper? You’re a winner, especially in the shoe department! Chuck Taylors are a go-to for many, just add an insole and you’ll be ready for action whether dressed up or down. Also, don’t forget your sweater or light jacket —the conference rooms are often air-conditioned.

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  • It’s been said that SXSW is the sum of serendipitous meetings. Compliment someone on their exquisitely tied Chucks, ask a friendly face what sessions they’re excited about, strike up conversations with strangers while waiting in line for lunch. There’s no danger there and it’s prime networking time. Remember, that’s just the point of Interactive and no one will find it awkward. Also, try to venture out on your own, you’ll meet friends as you go (plus yours will probably be late to scheduled meet-ups anyway) and you might encounter an awesome session or experience that you hadn’t intended. Snatch a flyer here or there too. If the company/party spent money on advertising, the promotion might just be worth it.

  • Get in the zone, live in the present and if you don’t like it —leave it. If there is an event that you’ve had your eager eye on, you had better get there early. Don’t be late. Don’t be on time. Be early. Remember what your grandma said, she was right! The lines may astound many first timers. Then once you’re in a session, engage. Avoid the habit of thinking about what’s next or what could be better that you’re missing. Finally, if you need to take a time out in the form of leaving midway through an unfulfilling session or a taking an unscheduled nap, just take that knee and don’t chastise yourself later.

  • Don’t get placed on Injured Reserve. Most likely you’ll be operating on little sleep, high salt, sugar and hops intake and suffering from “tech neck.” Do your body and brain a favor. Hydrate. Hydrate. And then hydrate some more. Try to get fresh air whenever possible, stand up, stretch and un-crane your neck at least once per hour. Also, try to walk to venues whenever possible. Often times lines for free rides and traffic will take longer anyhow.

  • Unsportsmanlike conduct can take you out of the game. Get familiar, but don’t get too familiar. The parties and after-hours festivities are memorable but if you go too hard you’ll miss the wealth of day-time opportunity. Don’t forget that the camera is always watching and now more than ever. Folks will take great pleasure in posting your lowest moments to social media and watching them go viral overnight. Be mindful that you represent the company you work for and/or your own personal brand. Have fun? Of course! But don’t do anything that can’t be undone.

Post Game:

  • Did you get the win? Not until you follow up post-conference. This means taking account of all that you saw and learned —review your notes and devise implementation strategies. But the human element will prove most important in your game stats accounting. Hopefully you collected business cards on which you wrote the date, time and place where you met the person, and a unique quip or conversation cue that will allow for a personalized email or tweet correspondence.

  • Plan for next year! It’s bigger + better every year. And you know this, MAN!

Get it in where you can fit it in! –Andia

National Women’s Health and Fitness Day Contest!

In honor of Women’s Health and Fitness Day, I’m launching a fun contest! Now here’s the catch. Both men and women can enter though you gentlemen would be entering in support of the women whom you may know and love. On to the prizes:

1st  In-person Wellness Consultation | 1HR Fitness Session | Swag: Fitness Apparel and Tasty/Healthy Delights (1 Winner)

2nd  Skype or Phone Call Wellness Consultation (3 Winners)

3rd  Small Group Fitness Session (10 Winners)

Photo Credit: Kerri Lynne Hamm

Photo Credit: Kerri Lynne Hamm

To enter: In 500 words (text) or 3 minutes (video) or less, please explain why you are in need of a wellness consultation. What challenges have you faced this year? What should I know about your story? What are your fitness goals for 2014? Be creative! Gentlemen entering on behalf of a gentlewoman, who is she to you? Why is she deserving? And how would this fitness session help her to jump-start the new year? Please email written responses and video links to TheFitCycle@gmail.com.

Rules: Entries close on Monday, October 7th at 9PM EST. Fitness sessions can be based in New York City, New York, and/or Phoenix, Arizona. Skype winners can be international. Phone call consultation winners must use a United States of America exchange only. One entry per person please. Winners selected by a panel of three (3) wellness industry judges. Prizes forfeited one year after award date if unused. No cash value or exchange of services permitted.

About Women’s Health and Fitness Day: Nation’s largest annual health promotion event for women of all ages. This year’s event is set for Wednesday, September 25, 2013, and in future years, is always be held on the last Wednesday in September. This unique national program — with participation by local organizations throughout the U.S. — focuses attention on the importance of regular physical activity and health awareness for women.

Get it in where you can fit it in! –Andia

#LifeOnTheUp

2013 has indeed been a year of forward motion. And upward motion. So, forward and upward motion. 3, 2, 1 lift off folks! After all, it is a MOVEment. May we present a personality feature by Turner Broadcasting (CNN, HLN, TBS, etc) and their new health and lifestyle destination Upwave. Watch the video here: http://bit.ly/AWOnTheUp Enjoy!

Get it in where you can fit it in! –Andia

National Exercise With Your Child Week

Yes, I know. You know. There is in fact a national celebratory “week” for everything. Shark Week. Mashed Potatoes are Best with Butter Week. I Locked Myself Out of My Apartment, Again, Week. This Selfie Makes Me Look Cute, Right? Week. But if you have a family –especially if you have a family!– the most important week of them all is National Exercise With Your Child Week.

Don’t have kids? That’s cool. Don’t care to have kids? I don’t care.  Kids are the future, and they’re truth-tellers. Ask a kid something. Anything. Something that you really want to know. Something with which you’ve been struggling. They will tell you.  No soothsayer, line-card-toe reader fees apply. Wouldn’t you then want to play with these little humans? Yes! That’s the answer! You do. So, GO! Go play.

Just the other day I played with some kids. This is what happened. 
“Oh but Andia, it’s been so long since I exercised my inner kid. I don’t even know how to play anymore!” you cry. (Wo)man, that’s a shame. We need to work on that. I can help. In the meantime, here are some ideas that I’ve crafted to get you started on the “Reclaim Your Kid, with Your Kids, Journey.”

Partner Workouts are examples of exercises that families can do together. Siblings and parents unite! Size difference is not a limiting factor. Working out together always makes folks closer and more engaged with one another. Children who regularly assist with or share in workouts with their parents feel empowered and confident. They are part of a team and developing leadership skills all the while. Let’s get it in:

Exercise 1: A favorite move is the PUSH-UP CLAP. Partners, both in push-up start position, align themselves opposite and head-to-head from one another. On the same count they perform a push-up and when returning to the start position they each clap one hand together with their partner. This move is fun, auditory and requires communication and synchrony – teamwork!

Exercise 2: WHEELBARROW PUSH-UPS. Watch the contents, they’re fragile.

Exercise 3: JUMP ROPE, a lost art! Kids love it and jump rope games can go on for hours and can morph into countless variations. Not only does it attend to cardiovascular health but it is also a high intensity compound workout. Think muscle building here. Parents want to get involved? Try double dutch or jumping together in the same rope.

Exercise 4: TAG, YOU’RE IT! What kid doesn’t enjoy tag? Boys chasing girls. Girls chasing boys. Siblings chasing each other. Toddlers chasing birds and rabbits. How do parents fit in? Well, a friendly game of tag is a fun bonding opportunity that seems to be a pure game. Not so. Track athletes run sprint series from a dead stop. Basketball, football and softball players run lines as athletic drills. The same movement(s) is being exercised in tag. The chase is exercise for all parties involved and whether or not they know it, a HITT (High Intensity Interval Training) workout!

OK. I’ve helped you. Can you help me? Join The Fit Cycle #MOVEment. Share this post with your family and friends. Send us photos and videos of your action. Click here for ideas! Oh! One more thing. If you live in or are visiting New York City on Saturdays in August, check out Summer Streets. It’s amazing and I love it.

Get it in where you can fit it in! –Andia

A story behind every movie. Pleased to introduce our newest.

Dear Universe,
The family that plays together stays together! That’s what I was taught growing up. Well, not in so many words but it was implied. We cycled. We rock climbed. We meandered through parks and swam in brooks. We visited museums. We crafted and designed.  We explored. We played, together. And we still do. (Side bar: I wanted to grow up to be Pippi Longstocking, just not the [semi]orphan part.) And play  is what I strive to do every day — even now. With friends’ kids, with neighborhood kids, with tall kids, with small kids, with folks trying to find their inner kid. It moves me.
Enter the twins: Theo and Lily. What energy, what color! Theodor “Dr. Seuss” Geisel’s  Thing 1 and Thing 2, naturally.  That makes me, you know, “the Cat in the hat.” And by “hat” read voluminous Afro. But too is a retreat to “conjunction junction what’s your function?” with SchoolHouse Rock!, sunny day(s) “sweepin’ the clouds away” on Sesame Street, after-school specials, “The More You Know” PSAs and other programming of childhood yore.
Before mobile devices, WE were the mobile devices. Devising mobility.  Mobile in our devicedness. (Yes, I coined a word just as my nine year old self would have, with pride.)  Hopping, beeping, buzzing. Hunting and gathering activity. Imagining moves. Just as I do now. So here’s to youth, to creativity, to fun, to family, to exercise –played together. Get it in where you can fit it in. 
You know where to find me,
Andia
But that’s only part of the story. Here’s how it all began:
Querido Spanish Harlem,
You keep me up at night. I mean, you really keep me up at night. Why is the dog barking? Why is la música blaring? Take your lovers’ quarrel inside! Put those kids to bed! But then, if I don’t fight it, I count the beats instead of sheep and you comfort me. Your heartbeat becomes my own and soothes me into deep sleep.

Morning. No alarm. You jostle me awake, rudely at times, and I cut my eyes at you. But it’s only fleeting because I feel lucky to wake up to you. You inspire me. Your legacy, your sabor, your passion – en fuego! Your energy is palpable and I covet it on days when I’m away too long. You coo at me on the street and welcome me home. “¡Oye mami!” Yes, I see you, you have a blessed day too!

You dance and parade with me, share your wares with me, feed me and it tastes so good. We’ve broken bread together and you’ve watched my back. Now it’s my turn. The Fit Cycle is for you El Barrio, all of you. A movie and a MOVEment. I’ve made my declaration, this is my dedication.

You know where to find me,
Andia

Days 3,4 and 5: SXSW CliffsNotes!

What a week! Before we get to the highlights, let’s get to the shout outs! Special thanks to one Donell Creech, master and commander! His vision for Blacks in Technology was a complete success and we are proud to have been a part of his team’s groundbreaking efforts. Thank you too Hugh Forrest, Director of the SXSW Interactive Festival. He wrote me a personal note before I made the journey to Austin and that just set things off! A lot of people spent a lot of time working collaboratively to create the remarkable South by Southwest experience, we thank you all.

Adventure is near the beginning of the dictionary, and that is where this story will start too.

Monique was an all-star on a panel about the provocative Quentin Tarantino film Django Unchained that included academics, film and cultural critics, filmmakers and activists. The room was PACKED and the conversation at times animated. *Disclaimer: the discussion was far superior to the actual film. That is not just my opinion, it is [reel] fact.

My panel was inspired by real people making real-time decisions about their health and livelihoods. Have to give it to my shredded counterparts for flexing on the shared mic and inspiring my early morning “vacation workouts.” I contemplated doing hanging abs from Adonis’ biceps but that might have been awkward, so I refrained.

Steve Garfield framed the SXSW experience as the sum of serendipitous meetings. We agree Steve, we agree. How’s meeting one’s cousin, James, for the very first time for $1,000, Alex? Oh! Daily Double. And then, of course, there will always be that time in which you meet your neighbor from Harlem while awaiting your tropical protein smoothie at a local Austin cafe. Rushing cabs and then sharing them with Microsoft developers and social media managers and journalists and literal world changers. Or, Sara Reinertsen on Trinity Street at 4PM — we both serve as ambassadors for the Women’s Sports Foundation. She couldn’t talk long as she was preparing for her own presentation –The Bionic Athlete– and an early morning run. Commitment.

We danced with the lead designer of standout app foursquare but were too nervous to two-step our way over to NY Times columnist David Carr who was really feeling the beat. Go ‘head with your bad self Dave, I see you. Maybe, in the tradition of SXSW, we’ll meet him randomly in the street here in New York. Or maybe it’ll be in Newark, home of the “Social Media Mayor” Cory Booker who we were excited to street meet. Cory is tall. Tall man swag. And brilliant too. His presentation was rated “top talk” and we know why. We were there. Check it out here. Speaking of brilliance –two words: Mae Jemison. Here are another two: Interstellar Travel. That’s what she said. Her panel may have been our favorite as she’s  made history –first woman of color in space– and continues making it with plans for the 100 year Starship: Yes,  “Daring makes a difference.”

Standing in line for the bathroom and being recognized as the “fitness girl from Forbes” always proves entertaining. It is a little less awkward when in broad daylight waiting for a grilled cheese sandwich though. It was tasty especially with the unicorn grilled on top. You might hear of Austin food truck lore and I am here to tell you that Grits and Greens prepared by local farmer Hoover Alexander is the best in town. Delicious, nutritious.

We were on our feet a lot. But promise of learning how to really play poker from a professional caused me to sit. Enter Edwardo Jackson, son of the 206. That’s the Seattle, WA interchange for those unfamiliar with the Emerald City. We sat for photographer Robert Fogarty and the Dear World campaign. Actually, that’s not true. We stood again while he took our photos.

But then we ran when a Twitter friend told us that a clip from our movie was being shared by Hugh Hefner’s daughter Christie Hefner, Executive  Chairman of Canyon Ranch Enterprises, across town at another SXSW panel. Her panel, sponsored by the world’s largest PR firm Edelman, explored “the research and anecdotes of how digital content can transform health, change attitudes and behaviors and turn knowledge into action through compelling storytelling across mediums.” How’s that for social media and contagious content!

We were featured in Black Enterprise before the week was over

I started with thanks, I’ll end with thanks. To those people doing good things for their communities and the planet, thank you. Personal best high jump high fives to scholar, activist and athlete Terri Givens of Take Back the Trail; the good people of organic neighborhood market The Boxcar Grocer in Atlanta, Georgia; the peace bringing RootWork of Naya Jones; and to the dedicated and impactful curation of Ashara Ekundayo of HUB Oakland. To those leading inspired and inspiring lives, big side-to-side bear hugs for you.

We look forward to next year. Until then, get it in where you can fit it in! –Andia

Day 2: SXSW

Our official “Healthy South by Southwest” initiative was announced live yesterday on KXAN-NBC and we encouraged viewers to tune into our live Twitter feed via hashtag #SXSWfit. We will be tweeting fitness and nutrition tips and finds throughout the 20th anniversary conference to encourage participants to make the most of the festivities in a healthy way. Some of the world’s most innovative and creative minds will be in attendance and this population often takes issues of health and wellness as second, or third –shoot– as last thought! Sitting at desks, eyes glued to mobile devices, posture compromised –break free!

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Speaking of innovative and creative minds, enter Steve Garfield! Yes, we’ve mentioned him before: “father” of the modern vlog and friend of The Fit Cycle. What you may not know is that my first introduction to Steve was almost two years ago via an online interview in 2011 in which we discussed golf, fitness and two very important members of my then film crew: Olivia and Joaquin. Coolest part of this story? Today I met Steve –in real life! Today was a good day.

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The night was still young and we were happy to meet leaders in tech, social media, film, fashion and academia!

Get it in where you can fit it in! –Andia

Day 1: SXSW

What a warm Texas welcome! Thank you to the good folks at Austin’s No. 1 rated television station KXAN-NBC for hosting Monique and I today! We talked The Fit Cycle, South by Southwest, filmmaking and fitness flash mobs. Stay tuned throughout the weekend for more updates of what looks to be a most amazing and memorable experience!
Get it in where you can fit it in! –Andia

MOVES

Curious to learn more about the exercises that you see in The Fit Cycle movies? Check blog weekly for updates, until then click the MOVES tab on the sidebar to your left to see what you’ve missed. Here you go:

stairs motw v1

See it in action!

#TheFitCycle Lunge

Get it in where you can fit it in! –Andia