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hiit instructor on medicine ball
Fitness
Published Monday Oct 05, 2020 by Meredith Simmons

Teachable Moment: How this Instructor Makes Online HIIT Classes Work

Fitness
Interval Training

In the best of times, HIIT is hard.  

As an instructor, I program my workouts to maximize work output, power, and your heart rate, while balancing it all with carefully-timed rest intervals.  

When we couple HIIT with a pandemic, it gets even harder.  

Instead of just showing up to class and hoping that there aren’t too many Burpees, factoring in the how, where, and when you take class becomes more labor-intensive. 

It may feel overwhelming, so here’s a primer on how to find the right class, stay engaged, and get HIIT done. 


When should I work out? 

One of the best parts of HIIT workouts is that they are infinitely flexible—and now with the increasing popularity and variety of online workouts, this flexibility is even greater. 

I’ve programmed classes anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour. During the COVID-19 era, this is an asset! You have the luxury of choice. Think about fitting in a 10-minute workout sesh between back-to-back Zooms, or blocking out time in your schedule for a full hour class at your favorite studio. No matter when you work out, or how long you sweat, your body and mind will thank you for giving it a calorie burn. (And don’t think a 10-minute interval workout will be easy—I’ve burned 200 calories during a short class before!) 


Where should I do a HIIT workout? 

This may seem like a tricky question, but the answer is simple: wherever you feel safe and comfortable. Like I said earlier, HIIT is endlessly flexible and can fit into your lifestyle as you see fit.. Personally, I’m striking a balance by teaching virtually and taking outdoor classes. It keeps me safe, while balancing my workout needs. (Plus, other people. IRL.) 

If you’re still sheltering in place because you or a loved one is high-risk from COVID, look for a virtual option. If you don’t have equipment like weights, look for a bodyweight HIIT class that will challenge you, using only your body. (Keep in mind, that probably means a lot of Burpees. You’ve been warned.) And, if you’re an apartment dweller or injured, be sure to let your instructor know before class starts—they will always be able to make low-impact modifications if you can’t jump. 

 

give yourself grace quote

 

If you’re ready to venture back into in-person fitness, studios across the country are starting to get back indoors while others are making the most of good weather and teaching outside. If it’s been a while since you’ve taken a HIIT class, make sure you give yourself grace and don’t expect to come back at the same performance level as your last class in March. A lot has changed since then, including you! 

Whatever you choose, make sure you’re finding a balance between challenging yourself and staying safe. If you want to keep doing virtual HIIT classes, go for it! Or, if you're ready for the IRL studio, and ready to follow all safety protocols, I say go ahead. As an instructor, it’s my job to keep you safe—I will always keep your comfort level in mind and will adjust your workout if you want to wear a face covering.

And—if you’re somewhere in the middle, there are some studios that are streaming in-person classes. While it’s a crazy experience for the instructor and feels a little bit like running a marathon while playing dodgeball, your experience will be as normal as fitness gets in 2020. Plus, it gives you the opportunity to see what’s happening in-studio before you go, which may ease your concerns about returning to in-person workouts. 


How do I stay engaged and motivated in my class? 

I’m going to tell you a secret: I value the community aspect of HIIT more than anything else. There’s just something special about a class where everyone experiences the same thing, at the same time—and then get to rest and complain about what you just did. As an instructor, there’s no higher compliment than if someone looks at me during a break with a look that says, “How dare you!” 

And that part of HIIT hasn’t changed with 2020, even if you’re taking your class virtually.  

 

how dare you quote

 

Here’s my challenge to you if you feel like something’s missing in virtual classes or feel yourself taking it easy: 

      •  Stay present.
      •  Try to feel a different muscle engage.  
      •  Breathe into the shaking.  
      •. Resist the urge to hide off-camera when the instructor calls for planks.  
      •  Scroll through video of other attendees during rest breaks. 

I promise you, you aren’t the only one suffering, and you can always unmute yourself and give props. 

Finally, what do you do if you aren’t feeling engaged during classes, whether they are in-person or virtual? Just because you can’t give someone a high-five for nailing that last set doesn’t mean you can’t celebrate them. Give them a shout out or chat them up after class. Engaging with other people during and after workouts can help you stay motivated, as well as fulfilling that acute need for social connection we all have right now. 

Regardless of where, when, or how you choose to work out, you can do it. I believe in you—so make like Tim Gunn and make HIIT work.  

Meredith Simmons
Written by
Meredith Simmons
Senior Content Marketing Specialist and Certified Group Fitness Instructor
About the author
Meredith is an avid sports fan and group fitness addict, which lead to her becoming a certified fitness instructor in 2019. A long-time Mindbodyian, Meredith helps tell the stories of the thousands of businesses using Mindbody to make the world a happier and healthier place.
tipping bar graph
Beauty
Published Thursday Oct 08, 2020 by Sara Lesher

Gratuity Guide: How to Tip a Hair Stylist (and Show You Care)

Beauty

Tipping. While it can be a taboo topic that no one really wants to talk about publicly, the fact is, it’s a very important one that shouldn’t (and can’t) be avoided. This is all too true, especially now, when it comes to beauty services. Even before, “all of this” happened, there appeared to be some ambiguity about exactly how much to tip, when, what’s a respectable amount, and why. Now that we’ve tried our best at #homebeauty, it’s time to head back to the salons, spas, and other boutique beauty businesses (if you haven’t already). We’re here to guide you through gratuity in the new normal and why tipping a little extra to show your stylists and service providers you care during this tough time is the right thing to do.  

To make sure we get you all the right answers, we asked around about it (so you don’t have to). Turns out, our Instagram followers had a lot to say about how to tip your stylists and show them some extra love right now. 

Here’s what you think: 


You’ve already been tipping more 

79% of you said you’ve been tipping more for beauty services recently. We’re all so grateful for our stylists—with split ends, grown-out roots, out-of-control brows, and terrible home-cut bangs to prove it. And now that many of us can return to our salons and spas, we’re appreciating the ones who help us feel beautiful even more right now. 


But, how much more? 

We got a range of responses to this question. Some said they tip 5% more than they previously did, and many said 25%-35% total! Not only are these stylists actual artists, but they’re providing services we just can’t do ourselves. On top of that, many had to close their doors for several months, many were displaced as their salons shut down for good, and all of them are trying their best to get back to a sense of normalcy and do what they do best—help us look and feel beautiful. So, take this as a guide. Tip what you can but remember how much these wonderful people do for us.

New services are not top priority (yet) 

When it comes to trying new services, 69% of you gave it a big fat NO, while 31% remain intrigued. It makes sense that many would stick to their go-tos right now, as salons are just starting to reopen in some areas or may not be open yet at all.  

Depending on where you live and your overall health, you might be sticking with the bare minimum for now. But if your city has put in place safe reopening guidelines and measures, and you feel ready to head back out there, you can do so safely at a Mindbody salon. And you may be interested in trying out some new services right now as a way to show your local salons some extra support. If that’s you, browse beauty on the Mindbody app—and filter your categories to find out what’s out there.

Why retail therapy is important

Another way you can support your stylists right now? Shopping. It’s the safest way to show them some love without actually going in for a treatment. Many salons offer pre-payment on the Mindbody app and curbside pickup or a plethora of shipping methods, so you can keep contact to a minimum as much as possible. Plus, they have some pretty great stuff. If you need to invest in a good shampoo—especially because you haven’t gotten your hair done in months—so why not buy it from your stylist?  According to our poll, it’s a pretty even split. 55% of you haven’t bought any products yet, while the other 45% have been shopping away. If you’re part of that 55, consider checking out your salon’s product offerings (you might see something you like)

Anything else? 

Finally, we asked you all open-endedly how else you’re supporting your stylists right now. We got a lot of great answers. There was a lot of overlap, but we thought you might like to see some of the ones that stood out. So, if we didn’t cover it all so far, we’re about to—because you all are awesome and you did it for us. Here are some of the great ideas you had: 
    •    “Paying in advance!” 

    •    “Being more diligent about scheduling appointments versus letting my hair grow out” 

    •    “Referring friends!” 

    •    “Being flexible” (this is a good one—check out the 5 things your stylist wants you to know before you book) 

    •    “Scheduling my next cut before I leave!” 

    •    “Sharing their photos on Instagram and telling friends!” 

 

So, if you’re a stylist reading this, thank you. We all want to continue showing you support during this time and beyond. And if you’re a regular person like me who really needs her highlights done, just schedule the damn appointment already (if you feel comfortable) or buy some purple shampoo from your favorite salon.

Sara Lesher
Written by
Sara Lesher
Marketing Content Associate
About the author
Spoiled by the San Diego sunshine, Sara’s hobbies include beaching, hiking, concert-going, and brewery-hopping. As Mindbody’s marketing content associate, she naturally loves reading and writing… so if you have any book recommendations, let her know. And just between us: she’s committed to health and wellness but loves a good taco (shoutout TJ Tacos in Escondido).