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A yoga instructor, barre enthusiast, and full-time mom, Amanda Nurse ran her first Boston Marathon in 2010 and 17 marathons later, she's a pro. Now an elite runner, Amanda has pivoted her life to fully embrace the world of fitness—owning and managing Wellness in Motion, Boston's first yoga studio for athletes.
We asked Amanda to share what inspired her journey, and how the MINDBODY and Strava integration will further motivate her fitness goals.
At Bowdoin College, I played Division III Lacrosse and put in a lot of miles during games, but I never had a love for running races until 2009. I moved to Boston after college and joined the Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge team to train for my first Boston Marathon. At the time, it felt like a bucket list item—one marathon and done (I thought!). But, after meeting so many great friends through the training process and running a BQ (Boston Qualifier) in 3:26 my first time, I decided to run another... and another, and another.
I fell in love with endurance running, and have run a total of 17 marathons, qualifying for the Olympic Marathon Trials. I’m currently training to run the Berlin Marathon next month! I started taking yoga classes to complement my marathon training, as a form of both strength training and stretching. Being prone to injuries such as plantar fasciitis, IT band syndrome and runner's knee, I knew I needed to take care of my body, and yoga helped combat these issues. The only problem was, it was hard to find classes geared towards athletes. So, I used my background in running and team sports to create yoga sequences designed to help athletes recover on their off days while helping them stay injury-free.
I have taught classes to Harvard University teams, pro-hockey recruits, Boston marathoners through Runner's World, as well as starting my own yoga studio for athletes. I discovered Barre3 in 2017 when it opened in my neighborhood, and I was newly pregnant. Providing me with an amazing low-impact workout throughout my pregnancy—and now postpartum—barre has been instrumental in keeping me injury-free and strong during marathon training!
Juggling new motherhood and personal fitness goals can sometimes feel daunting, but it's actually helped me stay more focused. I only have certain times each day that I can work out, and almost always it involves running with my son in the stroller. Luckily, he loves running with me so we get in outdoor time together and I find that pushing a stroller has made me a stronger runner. I also love bringing him to barre classes. I don't feel like I need to sacrifice my "A" goals, I just need to plan ahead, and make the most of my time. It's all about quality over quantity.
Strava is an amazing fitness tool and has created a great community of like-minded athletes. I love seeing my fellow runners' workouts, recaps and running routes—it helps motivate my own running. I also love reflecting back on my runs and seeing the progress I've made. I sync all my GPS data to Strava so I can see my splits, heart rate, along with the elevation, etc. It's awesome!
I've found so many great barre, yoga, and running classes through the MINDBODY app, and it's so easy to book. Syncing my MINDBODY classes with Strava will add another layer to keeping my fitness training in one place. I like to analyze what's been helpful in my routine—what I've done for cross training versus strength—and it'll be awesome to have it all automatically synced to my Strava account. It's been really helpful having my Barre3 online classes syncing directly to my Strava!
First off, be kind to yourself. In times when it feels hard, know that it will get easier with practice—don't give up or get discouraged. Secondly, think of each workout as a gift to yourself, rather than something you have to do. You get this time to improve your well-being, so enjoy it.
If you're interested in getting after your goals like Amanda and syncing your MINDBODY and Strava accounts, learn more here.
Summer is officially here, and with that, there are so many fun activities that will motivate you to get outside to stay in shape and strive for those post-quarantine fitness goals. But before you decide to get outside to enjoy some walking, yoga, swimming, or hiking, remember these best practice skincare habits to protect your skin from common skin concerns, such as, sunburns, chafing, and excessive dryness.
Here, board-certified Dermatologist, Dr. Bottiglione, shares some advice to help your skin stay healthy as you embark into the great outdoors.
When going outside, the sun is going to be your biggest culprit for damaging your skin. While the sun boosts benefits like vitamin D production, take notice when your skin is overexposed to the sun’s harmful rays as it becomes dangerous. When overexposed to direct sunlight, the skin is irritated, causing sunburns, dryness, and sensitivity that can increase the chances for wrinkles and skin cancer as we age.
Luckily, staying inside when it’s so pleasant outside is not the only skincare alternative to avoid the sun’s damaging rays. Here are a few simple tips to prep your skin before stepping outside.
Opt to protect your skin with a clinical-grade sunblocking lotion of 15 SPF or higher.
“Anytime you go outside, you need to apply sunscreen to your skin,” advises Dr. B. “Ensure you apply sunscreen to the full body and reapply often. In the morning, after cleansing your face, is the best time to apply.” He recommends a spray for oily skin, or the Dermatologist’s Choice Sunscreen Enhanced Moisturizer for dry to combination skin types that needs a little extra hydration.
The key is the more intentional you are about proactively protecting your summer skin, the healthier it will be. It may sound simple, but your skin will be happier when you take a preventive approach rather than a reactive approach—for example, applying the sunscreen moisturizer before a walk to help to avoid the treatment of a sunburn after. When prepping your bag for the fun day ahead, make sure to add sunscreen, a hat, and plenty of water.
Now the real excitement begins! However you decide to get your fitness outdoors, we have the skincare routine you need or a carefree and healthy day.
Deep breath. Like our favorite flow, these skincare tips will keep our mind—and our skin—at ease. If you take your yoga practice outdoors, wear an SPF shirt, and lay your mat under a nicely shaded tree to help shield you from excessive sun exposure.
“Avoiding direct sunlight and wearing protective clothing is smart to protect your skin from sun damage. Even if you are going for a relaxing walk or doing just a few sun salutations. Staying out of the direct sunlight will reduce your risk of sun damage and wrinkles.” - Dr. B
Swimming is one of the best cardio and strength training workouts, while also an enjoyable activity during the summer. Whether you are swimming in open water or laps in the pool, the excess amount of water with exposure to pool chemicals and environmental pollutants can cause skin irritation and dryness. To keep your skin hydrated and protected, Dr. B. recommends applying the Dermatologist’s Choice Pre-Bath Oil to your skin before entering the water. This will seal your skin’s protective barrier to avoid skin irritation from chemicals and debris. He adds, “The Pre-Bath Oil is what I give to all my patients with eczema or dry skin. It is the only thing that will protect and also deeply hydrate the skin.” Just apply this serum before you put on your sunscreen, and you're good to go!
With warm temperatures during the summer months, it’s the perfect time for hiking and exploring the mountainous outdoors. It is essential to take the necessary steps to avoid your skin becoming sunburnt, irritated, or breaking out. “Wearing a hat with a large brim that will shade your face and neck is key. A baseball cap is just not enough for the sun protection you need. After your hike, it is important to clean your face and pores of sweat, dirt, and toxins with Dermatologist’s Choice Glycolic Peel Cleansing Pads to avoid breakouts from occurring,” Dr. B. warns. Keep them in your bag for easy cleansing after a hike.
One of the biggest skin concerns cyclists or runners usually bring to dermatologists is chafing. Even if you’re just cruising along the seaside or taking a cycling class, those tight clothes and friction can cause some intense irritation and redness. “When you have an issue with chafing, you need to protect your skin. You need armor over the skin. Beeswax, for example, is thick to coat the skin and protect it. Another effective option is the hydrating Dermatologist’s Choice Pre-Bath Oil. For best results, moisturize your skin, and then add a piece of clothing to cover it (that is actually like armor),” Dr. B. shares. Are you a runner? Feel free to use this tip too before your next mile or 30.
At the end of your activity, the real results of that skin preparation set in. But sometimes, you need a little extra support afterwards. After any good workout, cleansing off the sweat, dirt, toxins, and irritant is paramount. Dermatologist Choice pH Balanced Cleanser helps to gently but effectively remove sweat, oil, and restore the skin’s natural pH levels.
Did you end up getting a sunburn, or is your skin dry from the elements? Soothe with the Pre-Bath Oil with natural oils like sunflower and jojoba oil for deep hydration and healing.
“Sun damage can manifest in multiple ways. Most often, you will notice a sunburn first, which can then lead to irritated skin—and over time, sun damage increases the appearance of wrinkles.” For safe measure, at night regenerate sun-damaged skin with Dermatologist's Choice Ultra Anti-Aging Cream with 15% non-neutralized glycolic acid to your skin. This powerful dermatology treatment rebuilds the collagen and exfoliates fine lines, sunspots, and acne on the skin. “Do not apply the Ultra Anti-Aging Cream on a sunburn or irritated skin,” Dr. B. shares. These are long-term habits to aid in maintaining your best skin health.
Capture your best skin with everything you need this summer with the Dermatologist’s Choice Skin Kit, and get 20% off your order with code MB20 at www.dermchoice.com.