Circuit Training in Denver Parks

20140626-132127-48087295.jpg

Denver’s City Park, view of Ferril Lake. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

There are SO many parks in Denver (over 200 in the city and county combined) offering the perfect landscape for circuit training. Benches, ledges, paths, and your own body weight can go a long way and help your wallet also!

In City Park, where benches are everywhere, we like to pick 20 benches and rotate exercises such as arm dips, step ups, squats, and push ups in small sets. Sprint from bench to bench, in between the exercises performed on the bench, to keep your heart rate up.
Not close to City Park? No problem! Find one near you and get moving. Low cost, high impact, with great results and no monthly fee. Use the resources this great city provides.

Take some great shots while you’re out there!

How do you get active in your local park? Tell us about it!

Advertisements

The Connection Between Women, Bikes, and the Community – Denver She Devils

An oldy, but a goodie post – reconnect yourself with women in the bike community this Saturday at the Royal Rush Poker Run 2! Come visit the She Devils and understand what biking and the Denver community means to them.

denverspeax

DenverSpeax was created at a time when I didn’t have a job, barely knew anyone, and had zero sense of the Denver community. We had just moved here from Michigan, and I hadn’t the first clue in where to meet people, or even if I did, how to become friends with them. Honestly, the website has proven to be a key tool in diving directly into the community, head first – taking it for everything it has to offer. By doing so, I’ve connected with the bike community, and in turn, made ridiculously awesome friendships. This is where the Denver She Devils come in to play: they will prove to be the missing link in my connection between biking and the Denver Community.

Image Image courtesy of the Denver She Devils Facebook Page. Make sure to click on the picture to visit, and of course, like ’em!

The Denver She…

View original post 655 more words

Windy Saddle Park & Lookout Mountain

As part of the June Hike Challenge, we’ve been scouring the area for hikes that are both challenging and beautiful. Windy Saddle is a part of the Jefferson County in Lookout Mountain. It takes about 35 minutes to get there from downtown Denver after rush hour has past (this is when we went for cooler temperatures, and great sunset shots!).

Also connecting with Windy Saddle is Buffalo Bill Trail as well as Lookout Mountain Trail. The park provides hikes of all skill levels, and includes some pretty spectacular views at approximately 7200 feet. Here are some of our favorite shots from the few times we’ve visited Windy Saddle in the last 2 weeks:

Image

Looking down at how far we had come. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014.

 

picstitch

Exploring Windy Saddle Park. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014.

Try taking different trails and paths for different perspectives and views. Also, give your body a great workout by stepping it up to trail running.

wildlife

Check out this cool mule deer that was hanging out by the Windy Saddle Park parking lot. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

The wildlife and plantlife are aplenty! We saw this mule deer leaving the park one night after a 3 mile loop. Wildflowers have bloomed all over the trails in an array of colors.

Make sure you know ahead of time when the sun will be setting; make smart decisions, regardless of your skill level. We made sure we were in the parking lot or extremely close for each sunset. Here are our favorite shots of the beautiful sunsets from Windy Saddle Park:

 

sunset

Lookout Mountain Sunset. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

 

sunset 2

Lookout Mountain Sunset. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

sunset3

Lookout Mountain Sunset. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

 

sunset4

Lookout Mountain Sunset. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

 

For more great photos, check out DenverSpeax on Instagram & Facebook. Happy trails, friends.

The Royal Rush Bicycle Poker Run 2 – Less than a week away!

This year’s Royal Rush 2 Poker Run will mark the anniversary of our first bike race EVER, and we are more than pumped!

banner

Click on the picture to check out the event presented by Denver Chain Chase – thanks to them for letting us borrow this pic from the event as well!

 

Here’s the skinny: 

  • 5 checkpoints at local, Denver bars.
  • At each checkpoint, participants receive a playing card.
  • Registration starts at noon this Saturday, June 28th, 2014; race starts at 1 pm at CoCo Bikes.
  • Prizes will be awarded for fastest men’s / women’s times, best card hand, most beers drank, DFL, largest bar tab, best costume, etc…. So you’re not the fastest? No problem – there’s still a chance to win something cool.

 

If you’re looking for a fun race with a chance to meet some great people, this is definitely your race. It’s a great introduction into the world of bike racing, and you’re guaranteed to have a blast while doing it. Last year’s event was incredible- can’t wait for this Saturday!

 

brother and kirsten

Flashback to last year’s Royal Rush Poker Run. Click on the pic to read all about it! Photo Credit: DenverSpeak Archive, June 2013.

 

Check out the Royal Rush 2 Poker Run Event on Facebook presented by Denver Chain Chase and sponsored by Raw Rolling PaperCoCo BikesMile High Tee ShopABUS, & Polar Bottle.

A Cool, Relaxing Place – The Kirkland Museum of Fine & Decorative Art

When I was younger, my Mom would take me to see art all over. One of my favorite places was the Chicago Art Institute where she showed me a collection by my favorite artist, Monet. Very into painting and the interesting world that art opened its doors to, my Mom has always been very supportive of anything remotely creative, which makes me incredibly lucky.

Since moving to Cap Hill, we’ve heard more and more about the Kirkland Museum of Fine & Decorative Art and what a cool collection they housed; with all of the great feedback, it quickly became #1 on our “To Do” list. Not only does the Kirkland Museum have a nationally recognized collection of art & decor, they also feature the works of Vance Kirkland (1904 – 1981) and 170+ other Colorado native artists.

Image

My favorite painting of Vance Kirkland’s from The Dot Paintings/ Energy in Space Abstractions – far away (left) and detailed up close (right). Click on the picture to visit the Kirkland Museum’s website & get more information. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

 

The museum is situated at 1311 Pearl St in the Cap Hill neighborhood of Denver. It’s easy to pass up due to its exterior looking similar to a gated house; this is one of the unique aspects of this museum.

 

Another uniqueness, all artwork is displayed salon style, and spread throughout the building that closely resembles a residential home.

sweettv

Sweet TV you’ve got there. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

The collection holds everything from snack machines, to furniture, to televisions, and flatware sets. It’s amazing to see the changes and upgrades between the different pieces’ time periods. It’s incredible to see designs of chairs from the late 1800’s resembling IKEA’s best sellers of today (HINT: the chair I speak of is in the shape of a “Z” and is made out of a few pieces of wood – see if you can find it when you visit!).

cup of tea

Tea would never be the same with this beauty from the 20s – what a beautiful piece! Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

 

snacks

Tell me you wouldn’t love to make snacks in this bad boy?! Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

 

purple chair

Not sure how comfy it is, but this chair is definitely cool-lookin’! Click on the photo to learn more about the Kirkland Museum on their website. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

 

Named after Ohio-turned-Coloradan painter Vance Kirkland, the Kirkland Museum has many of his originals paintings on display as well as in storage in the basement. Also interesting to observe are Kirkland’s different categories of paintings for different points in his life: realism, surrealism, and abstract to name a few.

 

ladies

Want to know the story behind this painting? Trust me – it’s a good one! Click on the pic and find out more info on when you can visit. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

 

Because there are so many pieces, and because the museum continuously rotates their inventory of pieces, each visit you find a new piece you hadn’t seen previously. This keeps the museum exciting and new even after a few visits. Admission prices are low ($6 for students, $8 for adults), making it easy to visit often to see all the museum has to offer and then some! After our first visit, we purchased a dual membership (two adults included) for $45 for an entire year.

We fell in love with the Kirkland Museum because of the story behind each piece. The staff provides additional tidbits of information that will blow you away, allowing you to easily see things from different perspectives. The museum provides a great place for relaxing and enjoying art that is both fun and educational. Take a trip to the museum for a visit – clear your head and enjoy the beautiful works by both natives and transplants alike. Have fun learning about artists Vance Kirkland and has major contribution to Colorado Art. Hope to bump into you there!

 

Check out DenverSpeax on Facebook.

 

Urban Hiking – Yes, it’s a real thing.

Denver….er, well, Colorado’s weather hasn’t been cooperating much as of late. Tornados, hail, rain, thunderstorms, you name it. It’s making it pretty hard for us to conquer the remaining miles in the June Hike Challenge.

Planning hikes and then having the weather screw up your plans is not only frustrating, but can cost you gas money, time, and energy. For these reasons, plus not wanting to let another day go by sans hiking, Moguls and I set out on an Urban Hiking Adventure around the capitol this afternoon and knocked two more miles off of our 50 mile goal. 45 more miles to go!

Take a look at our journey!

Image

When life gives you rain, bring an umbrella. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

 

hallway

Have you ever noticed the paintings inside the archways in and around Civic Center? Beautiful work. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

pond

Swimming, anyone? Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

 

Urban hiking is actually a real thing – people document their urban hikes throughout cities, including cool quirks like staircase connections, unseen walkways, and much more. Moguls and I kept to the sidewalks and walkways of the different parks, but look forward to finding interesting, less-traveled parts of Denver on our upcoming excursions.

Urban hiking is not only less costly then driving somewhere to hike, but it’s also good for the environment.

alamonte pond

Halfway through our Urban Hike, the sun started to shine again! Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

 

buildings

Love the contrasts of all of the different colors, shapes, and sizes of the buildings downtown. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

 

redthings

There’s artwork all around – go walk around and snap some shots. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

 

calder

More amazing artwork around Denver. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

 

fountainsintheground

Moguls’ favorite part – the fountains! Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

 

Get out there, Denver. Urban Hike! Get to know your city using the power of your own body. 

picstitch

Our favorite shots from the Urban Hike. Get outside and check out your own city! What new things will you find when you’re face-to-face? Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

 

Check out more hiking adventures on our Facebook Page.

Chalk it Up – Denver Chalk Art Festival Faves from 2014

Another reason why Denver is the coolest – the annual Chalk Art Festival on Larimer Square a few weekends ago (May 31 – June 1st). Free for all ages, artists gathered and created replicas of photos that were often displayed next to their work in the Square.

Here are some shots of our favorite moments and works from the festival:

Image

Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014.

 

Not only were there 200+ artists creating these beautiful works of art, live music, food, and beverage tents were also a part of the festival, much of which supported by Colorado businesses.

Image

Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014.

Image

Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014.

Many of the artists are local students competing for cash, backed by local businesses. Check back on the Denver Chalk Art website to find out who the winners are.

Image

Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014.

 

Chalk art, or street painting, dates back to the 16th century in Italy – it’s amazing this tradition is still prevalent all over the world today.

Image

Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014.

 

Yet another spectacular event in downtown Denver. We love having so many things to do and see downtown – it’s what makes the city great! What Festivals are you looking forward to this summer? Let us know!

 

Follow our adventures on Facebook.

 

Wipe Your Stress Slate Clean – The Acupuncture Lounge

When I was referred to acupuncture by my physician, I initially thought he was an idiot.

A form of traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture was the last thing on my mind to help me reduce stress. Weren’t there other options? No – little tiny needles stuck in me like a pushpin would be the way to go, he said!

I’m sure most of us have assumptions regarding acupuncture, but I think these assumptions come from a lack of knowledge. Allow me drop some learning:

  • Acupuncture doesn’t hurt. The needles are barely thicker than a human hair.
  • Many people associate needles with drawing blood or getting a shot – these are hollow needles, and sometimes painful. Accupuncture needles are virtually painless.
  • While Eastern practitioners describe acupuncture as the free-flowing of energy or life force within the body, many Western practitioners explain acupuncture as places to stimulate nerves, muscle, and connective tissue.
  • Acupuncture is used to reduce pain, relieve stress and allergies, and much more.

On Groupon, I found an offer for a $17 acupuncture treatment, thought “what the hell”, and purchased. Before purchasing, I made sure to look up the local center providing the Groupon to confirm reputation – The Acupuncture Lounge has nothing but raving clients and good reviews, so I was quite confident that I would be in the best hands there.

tables

 

The session I had purchased was for one-hour in a group setting. It might sound strange to be laying down and receiving treatment in the presence of a group of people, right? Wrong. No one’s concerned with you – they’re too busy relaxing and enjoying their own sessions. The Acupuncture Lounge makes it easy to enjoy the session and relax, wiping your stress slate clean. The soft music enhances the experience, and all three times that I’ve visited, I’ve been able to take a nice little siesta.

The staff at Acupuncture Lounge are friendly and helpful, answering any questions that you may have. They’re also relatable, and able to provide plenty of helpful tips to continue your stress-free journey after your sessions.

Frequency of visits really depends on what you’re going to treatment for – The Acupuncture Lounge will be happy to help you carve out a plan.

enterquietly

Check out the Acupuncture Lounge on Facebook by clicking on this picture. Photo Credit: Kirsten Ebey, June 2014

 

I’m happy that my physician recommended acupuncture; like I said, I would never have thought about this sort of treatment for stress, but it really is helping. I enjoy, and look forward to, my once per week visits – it helps me wipe the stress slate clean, and recollect myself. It helps me to remember my own goals and to focus on them, rather than sweating what we call “the small stuff”.

 

Acupuncture can be used for ailments other than stress – helping with quitting smoking, pain, allergies, migraines – you name it. Check out the Acupuncture Lounge and give them a call with any questions you may have – try something different! You’ll be pleasantly surprised.

 

Find more about what’s good in Denver by visiting our Facebook page.

Follow our adventures on Instagram  and Twitter: @denverspeax

Help End Water Poverty with The Colorado 54

 

Growing up in Michigan, a beautiful place surrounded by (what seems to be) an endless supply of water, it’s easy to take for granted how incredible of a resource the Great Lakes truly are. When I was much younger, I didn’t really understand why my parents were constantly reminding my siblings and I to conserve water; it was everywhere, wasn’t it? It’s not like it would run out! Silly parents. What I didn’t understand at that time was how precious clean, accessible water is for a healthy, sustainable living.

Image

Beautiful Lake Michigan. Photo Credit: Jackie Balcom, July 2013.

In such a prosperous, developed nation-state as the United States, it’s hard to think about water as a limited resource; it’s difficult to wrap our heads around the fact that, worldwide, 783 million people are in Water Poverty, meaning their closest source of water is far away, or possibly unsanitary/unclean, or just not affordable.

According to National Geographic, Americans spent $21.7 billion on bottled water in 2011, finding it convenient, appealing, and healthy (click Nat Geo link for article). Honestly, I’m not including this information to shame people into not buying bottled water, but instead to bring to light an incredibly prevalent issue:

There are individuals in the world who do not know when they will have their next drink of clean water.

Image

Women carrying water in Central America – photo is courtesy of National Geographic, accessed June 2014. Click through for provided image.

Late last month, Denverspeax was contacted by a group with not only big hearts, but an amazing plan: The Colorado 54. Organized teams of 500+ men and women will ascend 54 total 14er’s (14,000 vertical foot mountain) simultaneously throughout Colorado in an effort to end water poverty for 1000+ families in Nicaragua.

CO54-Header-Nav-Logo

Click on the logo to visit The Colorado 54 Official site! Photo Credit: The Colorado 54, June 2014.

 

While the actual hiking event takes place on August 2nd, 2014, registration is required ahead of time for a cost of $50, which guarantees the arrival of each participant’s welcome kit, including a Colorado 54 athletic shirt, stickers, and snacks from Colorado 54’s sponsors. Each participant can join or start their own campaign team to raise $500, which is the cost for a permanent, clean you hike two familieswater solution for two families in Nicaragua.

Register fast as the limit is set to 540 participants!

To find out more regarding the actual event day including awards, how individuals will be tracked, etc., please check out The Colorado 54 Official site.

Nervous about campaigning? Don’t be – they’ve made it easy to get donations from friends, family, and coworkers. Sponsors donate directly to your customized campaign page and receive an email confirmation with their tax deductible receipt.

 

Even though the hiking event is taking place in August, register and participate now to be a part of interviews and exclusive give-aways!

This is an incredible opportunity to not only unite as a Colorado community, but also to help end a serious issue. What I think is amazing is that both can be done by banding together and hiking – definitely something Coloradans are known for! Why not hike for a cause? Why not make a difference in others’ lives with this special 14er on August 2nd? Think about it – what an extraordinary feat we can all accomplish together.  

 

Special thanks to Kayleen Cohen for getting in touch with us regarding this event; we appreciate all information and pictures you all have provided, and look forward to spreading the word regarding this awesome event moving forward!