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The indoor-cycling studio finally has an opening date. By Melissa Romero
SoulCycle opens in DC this summer at 23rd and M streets, Northwest. Photograph by Melissa Romero.

After ten months and five days (not that we’re counting), we finally know when SoulCycle will open its doors in DC.

Sort of.

The indoor-cycling studio will open at the end of June or beginning of July, SoulCycle told Well+Being. It first announced plans to open a DC location in April 2013.

In October, SoulCycle signed a lease for a location at 23rd and M streets, Northwest. It will neighbor health-conscious establishments such as Sports Club/LA and Sweetgreen, and will be the first indoor-cycling studio for West End.

Posted at 11:19 AM/ET, 02/06/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
The penthouse pool will open in early July. By Melissa Romero
Vida Fitness announced Friday that its penthouse pool and lounge will open at the Yards in early July. Renderings courtesy of Vida Fitness.

This never-ending cold has us seriously longing for summer. And now there’s one more reason to crave the warm-weather days: Vida Fitness’s penthouse pool and lounge will open in early July at the Yards.

It will be the first opening phase of many for the $6.5 million facility, slated for 1212 Fourth Street, Southeast. Bang Salon will follow in mid-July, the actual gym opens in August, and Aura Spa services will be available in October.

The sixth Vida Fitness location will spread across 30,000 square feet with four floors dedicated to cardio, strength-training, and fitness classes. (Below) A kids zone and daycare services will be provided for members.

Vida Fitness at the Yards began construction on Saturday, February 1. Like its Verizon Center counterpart, this location will be massive—30,000 square feet with four floors dedicated to cardio, strength-training, and fitness classes—but developers say the decor will more closely resemble the U Street location

The facility will also feature some noticeable upgrades, including what Vida Fitness has dubbed an “experiential cycling studio,” with 30 bikes stationed on three stadium-seating levels. There will also be a kids’ zone and day-care services so kids can play while their parents squeeze in a workout.

Vida Fitness at the Yards will be the sixth area location for the gym. Two more are in the works to open by 2017.

Vida Fitness at the Yards. 1212 Fourth St., SE. Gym memberships are currently available at a discounted rate through the website.

Posted at 11:28 AM/ET, 02/03/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
The national franchise is opening multiple studios throughout Washington. By Melissa Romero
Pure Barre Bethesda opened January 20. Co-owners Katie Shearin and Marybeth Coleman will open a second location in Alexandria on February 3. Photographs courtesy of Shearin.

Washington is getting a slew of area Pure Barre studios with the recent opening of the company’s first-ever Bethesda location, followed by another in Alexandria next week.

Pure Barre opened in Bethesda on January 20 at 4930 Hampden Lane. Owners Katie Shearin and Marybeth Coleman will open a second location at 429 John Carlyle Street in Alexandria on February 3.

Pure Barre is a national franchise that first came to Washington in spring 2013 with locations in Fairfax and Dupont Circle. The 55-minute workouts involve isometric exercises performed at the barre—think pulsing squats—and on the mat that target the arms, core, and thighs.

The opening of the two studios will bring the number of Pure Barre studios in Washington to five (a Rockville location opened in early January). According to Pure Barre’s website, barre fiends can expect locations in Capitol Hill, McLean, and Reston in the near future.

Pure Barre Bethesda and Alexandria. 4930 Hampden La., Bethesda, 301-642-2864; 429 John Carlyle St., Alexandria, 703-303-8146. First class is $15.

Posted at 10:19 AM/ET, 01/29/2014 | Permalink | Comments ()
Ongoing research shows energy drinks alter the way our hearts beat. By Melissa Romero
A study has found that energy drinks results in increased heart contractions one hour after consumption. Photograph via Shutterstock.

The controversy over energy drinks rages on with a statement recently released by a group of radiologists who determined that consumption of energy drinks leads to increased heart contraction rates.

“We’ve shown that energy drink consumption has a short-term impact on cardiac contractility,” said Dr. Jonas Dörner in a statement released by the Radiological Society of North America on Monday.

The results come on the heels of an ongoing national debate over the potential dangers of energy drinks. A 2013 report by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration found that the number of ER visits related to energy drink consumption has nearly doubled since 2007, with 20,783 patients admitted in 2011.

Researchers tested the effects of energy drinks on individuals’ hearts in a small study involving 18 men and women. Each participant underwent a cardiac MRI one hour before consuming an energy drink. Then they underwent a second MRI one hour after consuming an energy drink that contained 400 milligrams of taurine and 32 milligrams of caffeine, two main ingredients of energy drinks.

Results showed that one hour after drinking, the participants experienced significant increased heart contraction rates in the left ventricle. The left ventricle pumps blood to the aorta, which then distributes it to the rest of the body.

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Posted at 03:00 PM/ET, 12/04/2013 | Permalink | Comments ()
New research explains the powerful benefits of regular consumption. By Melissa Romero
A study published by the New England Journal of Medicine suggests that eating nuts is inversely associated with mortality. Photograph via Shutterstock.

Good to know: There are 53 types of nuts in the world. Even better: The more you eat them, the more likely you’ll live longer.

That’s according to a study published yesterday in the New England Journal of Medicine that found an inverse association with the frequency of nut consumption and mortality over the course of the study. In fact, those who ate nuts seven or more times per week lowered their death rate by 20 percent.

The study followed 76,464 women and 42,498 men for 30 years, updating each participant’s diet and lifestyle variables whenever possible. To adjust for potential confounders, researchers excluded participants with a history of cancer, heart disease, diabetes, or stroke, as well as those who had ever smoked or who had a body mass index (BMI) of less than 18.5 or more than 40.

Results showed that those who reported eating nuts more frequently were leaner, less likely to smoke, and more likely to exercise, take multivitamins, and eat fruits and vegetables. Nut consumers were also less likely to gain weight.

The most surprising finding, however, was the significant inverse association observed between nut consumption and mortality. In addition to the 20 percent lower death rate among nut consumers, researchers noted inverse associations for most major causes of death, including heart disease, cancer, and respiratory diseases.

Although researchers noted that further study is needed to determine an exact cause-and-effect relationship, they noted that the findings join a “wealth” of data that support the health benefits of nuts for various chronic diseases. Past research has determined that thanks to nuts’ nutritional qualities—healthy fats, protein, fiber, and vitamins—consumption is associated with reduced risk of heart disease and diabetes, plus antioxidant and anti-inflammatory support.

Posted at 02:30 PM/ET, 11/22/2013 | Permalink | Comments ()
It’s still dealing with significant pollution problems. By Melissa Romero
Despite improvements to the Potomac River's health in the last year, the Potomac Conservancy gave the nation's river a C, stating that there is still major work to do to improve its overall health. Photograph by Melissa Romero.

Although the Potomac River has slowly become healthier and cleaner, it still has a long way to go, according to the Potomac Conservancy, which recently gave the river a C in overall health.

Yesterday the conservancy released its seventh annual State of the Nation’s river report, which bumped up the Potomac’s health rating from a D to a C. “The grade-point average shows that the river’s progress is excelling in some areas, but troubling signs are on the horizon in others,” said president Hedrick Belin in a statement.

The Potomac River provides drinking water for almost 5 million people and draws about 40 percent of residents in Washington to its waters for kayaking, standup paddleboarding, and rowing. However, it’s long struggled with polluted runoff produced by agriculture, landowners, and wastewater treatment plans. In fact, last year the group American Rivers deemed the Potomac America’s most endangered river.

Potomac Conservancy’s report stated that there have been some noteworthy improvements to the river’s overall health that warranted it an upgrade. In particular, there’s been a growth of the American shad fish within the past year. As of 2012, population of shad in the Potomac River has surpassed 100 percent of the goal established by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

The river also garnered an A grade for its increased focus on wastewater management and its efforts to designate protected lands. The Potomac River contains 1.8 million acres of protected land.

The full report is available at Potomac Conservancy’s website

See also: What's in the Water We Drink?

Posted at 02:30 PM/ET, 11/20/2013 | Permalink | Comments ()
New research says 6.2-milers are drawing more female runners and faster participants each year. By Melissa Romero
More women are signing up for 10Ks—and more women than men are finishing the race in less than one hour. Photograph via Shutterstock.

While millions of runners latched onto the half marathon last year, new research suggests that the 10K may be the new popular distance to tackle. 

Researchers at Northwestern University have determined that since 2002, the 6.2-mile race has become increasingly appealing to not just elite runners and high school athletes, but everyday runners, too. Even more, runners are finishing 10Ks at faster times.

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Posted at 02:30 PM/ET, 11/13/2013 | Permalink | Comments ()
New research says the vaccine does more than just prevent the flu virus. By Melissa Romero
A new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that those with a history of heart disease reduced their risk of suffering a heart attack or stroke by 37 percent when they received a flu shot. Photograph via Shutterstock.

If you haven’t yet received the flu shot, surprising new research may finally convince you to get one.

Results from the study, the first of its kind, suggest that the influenza vaccine prevents more than just the flu. It can also protect against heart disease and stroke.

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Posted at 02:30 PM/ET, 10/24/2013 | Permalink | Comments ()
New research says listening to tunes while working out provides more benefits than previously thought. By Melissa Romero
Actively listening to music while exercising can motivate you to workout harder, but also make the workout less exhausting. Photograph via Shutterstock.

I never run with music.

Shocking, I know. “Don’t you get bored?” people always ask me. “I’d die without my music.”

Okay, let’s all calm down.

My argument? I hate running with earphones, or anything that will distract me while I’m in the zone. Even a stray hair can send me into a tailspin.

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Posted at 12:47 PM/ET, 10/17/2013 | Permalink | Comments ()
A new study suggests the fizzy drink can save the day after a night of drinking. By Melissa Romero
Researchers in China have found that drinking Sprite may prevent a hangover. Photograph via Shutterstock.

This dreary weather is just asking for you to do some serious damage to that bottle of wine waiting at home. But if you’re worried about the aftermath, researchers have a new suggestion: Drink some Sprite.

Chinese researchers conducted a study that tested 57 different types of beverages and their effects on preventing a hangover. Xue bi, or Sprite, was the clear winner.

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Posted at 02:30 PM/ET, 10/11/2013 | Permalink | Comments ()