Hi there! I hope you’ve been enjoying the workout posts here on the blog.
My goal is to also sprinkle in a good amount of lifestyle, food, family, and adventures posts and revisit a round-up of Friday Favorites as much as possible, too!
This post covers a few weeks of exploring in NYC that I hope some of you get to experience as well. Scott and I have really been trying to get out and see more of our own city, so I plan to come back and share the highlights with you here. It’s always fun to play tourist in your area, right?
I’m also sharing the last few weeks of original workouts that I posted on my social pages. We ended up joining a local YMCA that couldn’t be closer to our apartment, and it’s been so wonderful to be able to take Skyler with me and drop him off at the gym daycare while I do my thing. I’m still regularly working out at Orangetheory, and it’s been great to be able to supplement them with my own cardio and strength circuits when I don’t have time to go all the way to the studio and back. Let me know if you’d like to continue seeing what I do!
Now let’s get onto the good stuff. Thank you for checking in today!
Latest New York City Favorites
• Little Italy Eats – Aunt Jake’s
I don’t get into Manhattan enough, and I realize this every time we visit Little Italy. Within just a short distance, there are so many different dining options, treats, and then *boom* you’re in Chinatown.
I’ve heard that there is a more “authentic” Little Italy located in the Bronx that is known for a great place to buy homemade bread, pasta, meat, pastries, espresso machines, Italian sausage, and more. Since that’s a bit of a haul for us, we haven’t made it up there and settle for strolls in Lower Manhattan instead.
I’ve never been disappointed with the dining options here, but I do have to admit that Italian food is my absolute favorite. After researching the best brunch spots in the area a few Sundays ago, I read rave reviews about Aunt Jake’s and had to give it a try.
Was it delicious? Oh. My. Goodness. Yes.
I ordered some kind of ravioli goodness with the best sauce and Scott had a classic bolognese. The pasta was homemade, of course, and it was so, so good. I can’t wait to go back and try more!
Also worth noting is how unexpectedly kid-friendly they are. You never know what you’re going to get when you walk into a small downstairs restaurant in NYC, but they were more than accommodating by checking our stroller, providing a high chair (this is more uncommon than you’d think), and making us feel welcome with him.
And if all of that wasn’t enough to make an excellent dining experience, they offer fresh juices with or without alcohol. Now that’s what I call a brunch!
• Chinatown fruit finds
After our brunch at Aunt Jake’s, Scott would not stop talking about going to Chinatown to pick up fruit for the week. Let me just say that I was extremely skeptical. First, I had no idea where the fruit comes from to make it so cheap. Second, it always seems like the fruit that they sell is strange and extremely unique.
Here you’ll find products that you really won’t see many other places including lychees, rambutan, durian, cherimoya, and more. Contrary to what I was expecting to see, the fruit was all very clean, the service was fast, and the prices couldn’t be better. The best deal we got was either two huge mangoes for $2 or two pounds of fresh cherries for $6! It didn’t even seem real.
You’ll have to dodge and weave the tourists who are crowding the area looking for knock-off handbags, but the trouble is well worth it and the prices. Our biggest draw was the fruit, but there were several exotic vegetable stands that featured things like bok choy, asparagus, lettuce, broccoli, and more. And remember to bring cash as all stands are Cash Only!
• Battery Park
Something that I still haven’t done — ever — is a trip to see the Statue of Liberty. We’ve made it to the water where the cruises around the statue take off and arrive a few times, and we’ll get on one in the near future. For now, we’ve loved the time we’ve spent in the surrounding park along with the views.
Battery Park is at the Southern tip of Manhattan Island, and there’s a lot that you can do just walking around for free. There are many monuments, statues, and memorials to see. There is a SeaGlass carousel (we missed this!) and an area of shooting water that quickly turned into a splash pad that entertained Skyler for quite a while.
It was nearing Skyler’s usual bedtime on this trip, so we didn’t go see Lady Liberty. But, we have plans to go back and visit soon. It’s a great spot!
• Time Out Market – Dumbo, Brooklyn
I absolutely love going to Dumbo! It’s known for its cobblestone streets, trendy stores, converted warehouses, and amazing views of the skyline!
Something also popular in the area is Time Out. The magazine highlights the best things to do in the biggest cities, and Scott brings home the latest edition of Time Out NYC on a weekly basis.
The Time Out Market New York debuted earlier this month and is becoming a must-see spot for locals and visitors. It’s basically the best of the city under one roof!
You can expect to find a wide variety of dishes from breakfast to dinner and everything in between. Try a little from each vendor or order a whole meal to experience that restaurant everyone’s been raving about.
Craving vegetables, I ordered a loaded avocado salad from Avocaderia while Scott got the chicken and biscuit from Jacob’s Pickles with a side of mac ‘n cheese. I have to say that sharing mine and sampling a generous portion of his was the way to go!
We spent a good amount of time walking the market as well as walking the park and riding the carousel. We ended up spending over three hours there! We finished our afternoon with a fancy bowl of Ice & Vice ice cream that Skyler couldn’t get enough of and made our way up to the rooftop before heading home.
It was really nice out and a great find for sure! Our “quick trip” turned into hours of exploring, and I don’t regret a single minute of it. If you’re in the area of Dumbo this summer, do yourself a favor and check it out!
Next time I’ll be on the hunt for Juliana’s Pizza so I don’t have to wait in a line out the door at the actual restaurant!
As I briefly mentioned above, I’ve really been loving getting back to an open gym that I have free range to do whatever I want to lately. I’ve been sharing the notable workouts on my Instagram stories (and Facebook stories), and have received feedback to keep them coming. Since they seem to be helping some there, I’ll do my best to share them every now and then here, too.
Most of the strength workouts that I share are either started or followed up by twenty-ish minutes of cardio. I’ve been turning to the treadmill lately because I’ve been in a running phase, and I’m also looking forward to getting back to the elliptical, stationary bike, and StairMaster.
• favorite LIL posts
» Ten Tips For Traveling With a Toddler
As someone who likes to pack a few “just in case” outfits for myself, I’ve now shifted into planning out my days with mix-and-match outfits to eliminate overpacking and fit all of Skyler and I’s stuff into one suitcase that I check-in! Check out more on this along with my ten biggest tips on what to pack and what I’ve learned about traveling with a young toddler.
» Outdoor Total Body Strength Workout
My favorite part about this specific workout is that all of the exercises target more than one muscle group at a time! I love getting the most “bang for my buck” with workouts, so these moves are a little more dynamic than the standard strength workouts you’d see with a few sets of dumbells. You’ll also find little bouts of cardio to raise your heart rate throughout this one with jumping jacks, boxer sit-ups, jumps squats with reaches (grass grabbers), and exercises that feature multiple movements.
And with that, I’m going to sign off today! If you’re local to NYC, please let me know some of your must-sees to add to our Summer Bucket List and I’ll be sure to share more adventures along the way.
Have a great weekend, friends!