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A Change of Scenery

California skies from Ocean and Colorado in Santa Monica

I’m definitely going to lobby for more business trips on the West Coast!

While the shoot I worked on last week involved many hours of pre-production long before I ever boarded my JetBlue flight to Los Angeles and involved a detailed run-of-show, I somehow managed to feel more rested at the end of the three-day jaunt than I have in recent memory.

I think there were two things responsible for the energy boost:

  1. Thanks to the time change, I had to stay in California for a minimum of two nights. So, instead of rushing to the airport as soon as the shoot wrapped and hoping I’d make my flight, I had time to decompress after the work was done.
  2. The time change also worked to my advantage when it came to kicking off my day with a morning workout! I admit, early morning workouts here at home in New York really aren’t  my thing. However, in California, I woke up without an alarm somewhere between 5:30 and 6:00 a.m. So, I put that energy to good use in the hotel’s fitness center. Here are the down and dirty workouts that kept me energized on Pacific Time:

Happily started my mornings in the Shore Hotel’s fitness center

Day one – After the 5-hour flight:

  • 30 minutes elliptical
  • 15 minutes recumbent bike
  • Squat Tabata (4 minutes)
  • Push-up Tabata (4  minutes)
  • Stretching: 7-8 minutes
  • Total time: 60 minutes.

Day two – Pre-shoot jump-start:

  • 30 minutes elliptical
  • Four back-t0-back Tabatas:  squats, planks, crunches & push-ups (16 minutes)
  • Stretching: 5 minutes
  • Total time: 51 minutes

Day three – Pre-flight

  • 25 minutes recumbent bike (not my first choice, as I knew I’d be sitting on the plane for another 5 hours, but the ellipticals were taken)
  • Plank Tabata (4 minutes)
  • Push-up Tabata (4 minutes)
  • “Crazy Eights” for shoulders: 8 reps of lateral raises, 8 reps of front raises and 8 reps of overhead presses. No rest between each exercise and no rest before moving on to next muscle group.
  • Single-leg bicep curls: 12 reps each leg. No rest between switching legs or moving on to next exercise.
  • Single-leg overhead triceps presses: 12 reps each leg.
  • Repeated Crazy Eights through triceps overhead presses for three sets total.
  • In an effort to feel as loose as possible before the flight, I spent a full 10 minutes stretching to wrap things up.
  • Total time: 55 minutes

Post-work fun with Molly & Jessica at The Lobster in Santa Monica

In the end, probably the best part of the trip was being able to find a balance between work and play by catching up with my dear Northwestern gal pals Molly and Jessica. We had a fabulous dinner catching up over Prosecco and seafood after my shoot was finished. Making new friends with my videographer Jake and his crew was the final bonus.

So, what did I learn from this LA experience? Even when you’re working, it’s important to find some time for yourself. Whether you’re making new friends, catching up with old ones or breaking a sweat and taking in some new scenery, no matter where you are in the world, it’s important to take some time for yourself so you can have fun, be fit and feel fabulous!

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