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Skincare + Beauty


Got your attention?


Let’s chat.

Everyone’s got an opinion and I am ready to share mine.  Botox and other facial injectables are quite popular right now, especially among young women ages 25-35.  That includes me peeps.  It seems like every other woman I meet has either had botox injected or is thinking of it.  I can’t lie, it has crossed my mind.  I am an animated talker and have smile lines as well as strong muscles in my forehead.  I do have a slightly lazy left eye and that causes a little imbalance in my face.  I am turning 30 in 6 months so my face is not as “youthful” as it once was.  Would I like to have a smooth and radiant face? YES, of course.  Am I going to get botox? No. No I am not. Cost aside, there are other factors to consider including muscle imbalances, toxicity and for the fact that I WAS NOT CREATED TO BE PERFECT.

Muscle Imbalance

Over time, botox can cause the muscles to atrophy (fancy word for wither). This means that those muscles will collapse inward and that will cause you to look older.  Doesn’t that defeat the purpose?


Botox is the brand name form of botulinum toxin that is used to temporarily paralyze muscles in the face (or where it is injected).  Botulinum is a neurotoxic spore.  There is not concrete evidence that botox has an adverse effect on individuals with autoimmune diseases. HOWEVER, just because something has not been proven does not mean there is no relationship between the two. At the end of the day, individuals with autoimmune (AI) diseases have a predisposition to attack their own bodies when placed in a “stressed” state. (I am really simplifying this down folks…big picture for easy comprehension). Environmental factors play a huge role with AI diseases.  This is why I make a huge effort to limit my environmental stressors in life – hence me staying clear of botox and other added environmental toxins.


Why has our society developed an unhealthy obsession with being perfect? Why do we want to hide our age from our faces or our bodies? Quite frankly, the older I get the more confident I become and the more I love my body.

My body is a representation of its strength and capabilities, not a reflection of what I do to it.


Safer Skincare Options

While I am dropping the addiction to perfection, I still want to age gracefully and try to prevent fine lines from setting in too early.  I would like to try and preserve my skin’s elasticity as long as possible.  I do want that “glow”.  Here are the products and tips I have to preserving youthful skin without the pokes and prods.

  1. HYDRATE: drink water.  Drink a lot of water.
  2. EAT GOOD FOOD: eat for the glow.  Fill your body with the micro and macro nutrients it needs and you will glow from the inside, out.
  3. SWEAT: sweat it out! Not only does this naturally eliminate toxins from your body, but the endorphins give you a “glow” that no product ever could! It is a joy that radiates from inside your body…your soul is shining for the whole world to see so SHINE BABY SHINE!
  4. RESURFACING PEEL: this is my liquid gold.  Overnight it gently sloughs-off the surface dead skin cells while smoothing skin’s tone and texture.
  5. CLEANSING BALM: you know I love this product. I did a WHOLE blog post about it.  Check it out!
  6. TONER PADS: I love the Counterman toner pads as they help to balance my skin after teaching multiple SoulCycle classes and will wipe off any excess dirt, oil or makeup.

You make your own decision about Botox.  It is your body.  Just know that you are perfectly imperfect and that your worth doesn’t come from how smooth your skin is.




Skincare + Beauty

One Product, and only ONE

If I had to use just one product from Beautycounter, it would be the Cleansing Balm.  This balm is by far the most versatile and unique product I have used.  Loaded with nourishing butters and oils, this rich balm packs a beauty-punch! Unlike cleansing with coconut or jojoba oil based cleansers, the cleansing balm is made from anti-oxidant rich raspberry, cranberry, davana and magnolia oils.  Rich in vitamin C, it brightens the tone and texture of your skin while soothing any imperfections or irritations.

I also use this balm when my skin on my stomach or hands is irritated.  Thanks to my Celiac disease, I develop painful rashes when exposed to gluten or nightshades and this balm has helped to soothe and take away some of the pain.  I also have a tendency to infect easily and a small sore can quickly turn into a boil.  Not cute.  Not comfortable.  These boils have left scars on my face and with the continued use of this balm and the overnight peel, my scars are disappearing! It holds a dear place in my heart for these reasons!

What can this product do?

  1. Cleanser: The cleansing balm is a great choice to use when removing your makeup.  With emollient rich oils, it gently and thoroughly lifts off dirt and makeup while plumping and soothing your skin.
  2. Mask: when left on for 30 minutes, the balm will deliver much-needed moisture to your skin, leaving it soft and supple!
  3. Overnight treatment: the balm makes a superb choice for an overnight hydrating and brightening treatment.  The raspberry seed oils are rich in Vitamin C to help even our skin tone and lighten any dark or age spots.  Magnolia and davana oils provide deep hydration, essential to reducing fine lines and wrinkles and plumping your skin from the inside out.
  4. Skin treatment: the balm is perfect at protecting skin against harsh winter winds and will soothe mildly sun-burnt skin in the summer.
  5. Heal: this product is terrific at healing cracked skin on the hands, elbows, feet as well as soothing rashes caused by rosacea or eczema.  The balm is also a great choice to use when your little baby has rashes from teething or when they have chapped cheeks.
  6. Lip treatment: we all want kissable lips, and this balm will soothe, plump and hydrate the most chapped of lips!


Who is this product for?

The cleansing balm is for anyone! Men, women, children…it is hypoallergenic and great for sensitive skin.  Even if you have oily skin, do not be afraid of an oil-based product! Often our skin produces too much oil when it is severely dehydrated.  The use of the balm will help counter excess oil production and will balance out your skin.

How do I use this product?

  1. To cleanse: apply a pea-sized amount onto dry skin and massage all over your face using your fingertips in circular motions.  After a minute or two, wash off using warm water and a soft face cloth.  Do not rub your skin! Just gently massage off the product, being extra gentle with your eyes.
  2. Mask/Overnight treatment: For a face mask, apply a pea sized amount to dry skin and leave on for 30 minutes then gently wipe off with a warm and moist face cloth. For an overnight treatment, leave on overnight! This one is easy folks.
  3. Skin treatment: apply to chapped, irritated and sore skin and leave on.  Do not wipe off.  Allow the product to completely soak in.

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For a limited time (until February 25th, 2019 – or until supplies last) you can receive a FREE container of the cleansing balm (valued at $89) when you spend $200 or more on the Beautycounter website.  Not ready to commit to $200? No sweat! I would just highly encourage you to try this product next time you need a cleanser, treatment or all-around magic balm.

Protect and nurture that skin!






Skincare + Beauty

Winter Skincare Tips

YIKES! Has old man winter stolen your glow? He sure tried to take mine…my skin has been suffering with the winter conditions here on the east coast! But not to worry- we can take our glow back!

Good skin starts from within.  Yes, that rhymes for a reason: you can’t achieve healthy skin when you are depriving your body of proper nutrition and hydration.  And this shouldn’t come as a surprise because our skin is our largest organ.

So.  Let’s start at the very beginning (a very good place to start… cue music)


Tip 1: Food that nourishes and heals YOUR body

I can’t tell you what diet to follow.  And I shouldn’t either.  And by “diet” I simply mean a way of eating.  Perhaps Paleo is good for you; Keto could be your thing; or maybe you are Vegan.  All fine and dandy as long as you are listening to your body’s signals and not just following someone else.  A lot of skin issues stem from food sensitivities and allergies.  Nagging pimples or rashes on your skin? Check your diet.  Common culprits are acidic foods, lactose, eggs, gluten, dairy, nightshades, nuts, sugar…basically any food can be a trigger.  So, heed your body’s clues.  Don’t cut everything at once and don’t ignore it either.  Find the foods that make you feel the best and stick to those.  What works for me may not work for you; what works for you may not work for your best friend.  Keep as many foods in your diet as possible for variety and micronutrient diversity while still listening to your body.

Tip 2: Eat healthy fats!

Don’t be afraid of healthy fats: avocado, coconut, nuts, olive oil, fish oils, full fat dairy if that is your jam…fat is fuel and fat is good for your skin.  Specifically, omega 3 fatty acids.  Fat is also good for your hormones and happy hormones = happy skin.  This one is simple ladies and gentlemen.  Simple.

Tip 3: Hydrate your face off…(or on, actually, we want our face to stay on)

Let me break this down for you in easy language: the more hydrated you are, the more *plump* your skin will be.  There are multiple layers to our skin and there is a lattice like structure that sits below the surface layer (think of fishnet stockings).  We want to hydrate our skin from the inside out to literally push those wrinkles and fine lines back up.  It is like soaking a raisin in hot water…after enough time, the raisin will be twice its size as the hydration has soaked into the fruit, plumping it from the inside-out.  We have a tendency in the winter to skimp on our water, mainly because it is just so darn cold.  I don’t want to guzzle a 2L bottle of water thank you very much; but, I will have 5 cups of herbal tea plus a water bottle.  Cool.

*Note, I said HERBAL tea.  Caffeine will dehydrate you.  It also will mess with your sleep and hormones, so just keep that coffee to a few cups (or just 1!) in the morning, and rooibos/herbal tea later on.

Tip 4: Oil! Glisten up that skin baby!

Add in a facial oil.  I particularly like Squalane oil as it is lightweight and never leaves my skin greasy. This will add an extra layer of moisture, improve skin’s texture and tone, increase elasticity and cell turnover, and won’t clog your pores.  Squalane oil is derived from olives so it is an all-natural product.  I use the Indie Lee brand and love it.

Tip 5: Double-time that sleep time.

Sleep.  AHHHHH the beautiful thing that is sleep.  Nothing can make up for a lack of sleep, so prioritize it.  You are not a hero if you claim to be able to successfully run off of 5 hours of sleep.  Your brain (and body, and skin, and muscles…) needs 7-9 hours, not ands/ifs or butts about it.  So while you are sleeping, use that time wisely and put on an overnight face mask, or, a rich and super hydrating night cream.  My skin has been thriving with the Overnight Resurfacing Peel and the Countermatch Recovery Sleeping Cream .

There you have it- my 5 top tips for glowing winter skin! Don’t wait until the spring to have good skin….start now!



Skincare + Beauty

Safer Skincare: Disrupt the Industry

Make a Safer Choice

We work so hard to make the “right choice” every day.  We move our bodies, we work our hearts, we work our brains, we eat foods that nourish our cells and we spend time with people who add value to our life. Then, we slap products onto our bodies that contain potentially harmful and toxic ingredients.  Interestingly, not all “natural” products are safe and not all synthetic ingredients are toxic.  There is a long list of un-safe ingredients and they should be avoided at all costs.  We don’t realize it, but our skin (our largest organ) absorbs a lot of what we put on it. Roughly 60-70% of these harmful chemicals are small enough to be pulled into our bloodstream.  These nasties will then make their way to our endocrine system to set up camp and start a havoc party.


The skincare and makeup industry is a multi-billion dollar beast that has very little regulation.  Most women put on several different products on their bodies every day.  These products can have up to a hundred different harmful chemicals that are directly linked to immunotoxicity, PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome), hormonal imbalances and infertility.  Now, women are not the only ones affected by these harsh chemicals: men’s skincare products can be just as harmful, and have similar negative side-effects.  Harsh phthalates can have a devastating effect on sperm count and concentration.  Here is a terrific blog post on safer skincare and this is a fascinating study on couples undergoing IVF treatment and the effect of phthalates and DNA damage.

With such bold language, you can tell that I am very passionate about this topic.  It is my job, my purpose and passion in life, to help other achieve a lifestyle that makes them feel vibrant, healthy, balanced and alive! This goes from working our bodies at SoulCycle to helping you select the best products for your skincare and makeup routine and…


SURPRISE!! I have joined the Beautycounter team and am a safer Skincare Consultant! I love helping others with skincare and makeup, and would LOVE to work with you! Drop me a line, email, DM, text…you name it…and we will get you on a safer skincare journey! Your health is extremely valuable.  There is no price-tag that can be named in exchange for having a vibrant life, so join me in disrupting the Beauty industry and chose safer products! See below for a recent makeup look I did and the products I used!


Products Used

Eyes: Volumizing mascara, eyeshadow in Sienna and Copper, and liquid matte eyeliner 

Skin: Highlighter palette, Nectar blush

Lips: Bite beauty nude lip (circa 2016…almost out and can’t even read the bottom!)

Remember, beauty is much more than skin deep- but let’s take care of our skin!





New Year…Old You?

Happy 2019!!!

Well, we have made it through the first week of 2019.  Anyone know where 2018 went? Yeah, me neither.


Unless you have been living under a rock on the top of the Rocky Mountains, you have probably been inundated with tips on how to achieve “your best year yet” or “the body of your dreams”.  If your feed is anything like mine, tips on losing those last 5 pounds or talk of the latest new diet has been overshadowing the posts on gratitude for the year we have just had.

I am over it. I am over hearing people talk negatively about their minds and bodies and wishing for ways to fix superficial problems.  I am over taking things away from my life.

So this year I am NOT making resolutions.

Yes you read that correctly.

I am NOT making resolutions.

Instead, I am making intentions.  I am declaring ways to add value into my life. I am taking small steps towards living out God’s purpose for my life.

I have two sets of intentions for my year

Surrender + Alignment

The first set are themes of the actions and decisions I am taking in 2019.  I am surrendering my plans, my control, my individual strength for the ultimate plan God has for me. I am walking under His sovereignty and am aligning my life to the one He has placed me in.  I am aligning my life in Toronto to the one I feel that I have been called to. I am setting down roots and diving into making this the most beautiful and bright year yet.  SoulCycle Toronto, I know we have only just met however I feel like we are going to do big, BIG things together this year.

Motivate + Nurture

The second set of intentions hint at the purpose I believe I have been called to.  My job is to motivate a room full of moving bodies and captive brains.  It is my biggest passion in life to help you achieve your best, brightest, most vibrant life. I LOVE helping you build healthy habits and want to motivate you to be the best, most authentic version of yourself.  At SoulCycle, we work our bodies to physical limits so that we can crack open our hearts and souls. We lay a groundwork of authenticity, integrity, accountability, strength and love.  The work is gritty, sweaty, and sometimes even ugly; but, it is the foundational element to everything else that is beautiful in our lives.

So join me in NOT making resolutions and instead, make intentions.  Seek ways to add value into your life.  Join me in a dark room on a bike that goes no where and together, we will make 2019 our most passion-filled and purpose-driven year yet.



Fitness, Lifestyle

Get in your head

Get in your head.

A lot of trainers tell you to get out, but I say, get in.  Instead of running from “I can’t do this” or the “I am too tired” thoughts that creep in, change the narrative.  Change the thought process and pattern.  We don’t learn anything by running away from problems.  Pretending like something isn’t there only allows it to manifest into something bigger.  “I can’t do this run” turns into “I am not good enough to come to class” which could turn into “I am not good enough”.

Flip it, part 1.

If you have come to my class, you’ve heard me say it before: change the narrative.  Change the sorry that is running rampant in your head.  Grab onto the thoughts, flip them around, and make empowering statements about your life.  Replace the negative words for statements that will strengthen you and lift you up.

Flip it, part 2.

When you are facing something that definitely feels too big to handle, break it into smaller pieces.  A great example is doing a long run out of the saddle.  That run takes a strong foundation of skill and muscle to properly complete it.  Instead of running wild out of the saddle, we start small by learning how to do jumps.  “Jumps” are when we come straight up for a series of counts (usually 8, 4, or 2) and then go back down.  We learn how to control our muscles and body in smaller increments.  When done properly, jumps are JUST as hard as long runs, if not harder,; however, they are more manageable.  If your instructor is leading a long run and you simply are not ready to do the whole thing, break it up! Stay up for 8 or 16 counts then sit back down again. Repeat until it is over, or, until you feel strong enough to run the whole segement.  Replace the “I can’t do this run” with “I can jump for 8 counts at a time”!

You can do it.  You need to want to do it.

Ultimately, you need to WANT to attack what is in front of you. You need to decide to show up and do it.  Nothing will ever change from skirting the problem or just bowing out completely.  There have been many days where I don’t think I can confront what is going on in my body; however, I WANT to see it get stronger.  I WANT my body to be strong. I WANT my body to be healthy.  That WANT is my fuel for my story.  That WANT is what inspires me to change my “I can’t” into the biggest, best “I CAN!”


Want it.

Flip it.

Change it.

Yes you can.





First Christmas Out of Home + Tip #1

Today is the first Sunday of Advent and the Christmas season OFFICIALLY kicks off today! Truth be told, I have been playing carols for weeks now but shhhh…that can be our not-so-well kept secret.


This is the first Christmas that I will not make it home.  I am 29 years old.  That means I have been home with my family for 28 years! Christmas is a huge holiday in my family that is rich with traditions, laughter, skiing, cookies, mulled wine, and puzzles! Although my heart yearns for my family, I am also feeling quite excited at the opportunity I have at hand.  I am going to be spending it with a new community of wonderful people, bringing joy, love and light into the studios over the holidays.  What I am learning more and more is that each season of life is what you make of it.  You could dwell on things that you DON’T have, or, you can chose to focus on what you DO have and cultivate new traditions.  When unpacking all my boxes in my new home, it was the perfect time to go through all my Christmas decorations.  Although I have spent Christmas at my parent’s home, I have been collecting ornaments and knick-knacks for decorating my apartment, wherever that has been in the world.

I know the holiday season is one of many parties and celebrations for people.  Often, the social calendar is packed with events.  I am not a believer in deprivation or saying NO to fun times.  This is a time to make good choices 80% of the time, and live life BIG the other 20%.  Instead of stressing about that beautiful slice of Christmas cake or that celebratory champagne cocktail, let yourself indulge without the guilt.  This brings me to my first tip of the season:

Tip #1: Embrace the wiggle room and leave the guilt at the door!

During the week when your parties and events are at a minimum, make really healthy, clean-living choices.  Walk a few extra blocks, drink more water, eat more plants, and for  heaven’s sake, COME TO CLASS! SoulCycle is the perfect addition to your holiday schedule.  You can come in, get a seriously awesome workout and a mental break, and then walk out in under an hour.  I promise to have you through my class on-time so that you can be on your merry way.  Ultimately, look for ways to give yourself a bit more “wiggle room” so that when you are out at the party, you know you’ve made some really great choices during the week.  Here comes the most important part: LEAVE THE GUILT OUT.  Just stop with the “I shouldn’t have had that cookie and that glass of wine.”  That just is the biggest party pooper of all time.  Guilt is a thief: it will rob you of joy and peace, which is the exact opposite effect of what the season should bring you.

So there you have it, my first tip of the season + a sneak peak into my Toronto home and the cozy Christmas vibes that it houses.

Come back next week for Tip #2 and until then, book those bikes and I will see you this week!




Hello Toronto + Muffin Recipe

Well hi there Toronto – nice to meet you!

I have officially been here for 2.5 weeks and it feels like it has been months! Here is a quick recap of the last few weeks:

Nov 1-10: I had 10 days to pack up my life in Vancouver.  I had 10 days to say my “see you soon” to friends and family.  10 days to say goodbye to an apartment building that has been a part of my family for 20+ years.  10 days goes by quick my friends.

Nov 11: Fly to Toronto

Nov 12-19: teach 14 classes and become acquainted with a new city.  Talk about diving into the deep end! To be honest, this was such a gift as I was able to meet so many new people and really start to establish a rhythm.

Nov 20-24: Teach my regular class schedule.

Nov 24: Movers arrive with all my belongings.  I had 36 boxes of various sizes, 2 large kitchen/china boxes, 2 wardrobe boxes, 1 couch, 1 arm chair, 1 bookshelf, 4 paintings, 1 mirror, 1 baby Christmas tree, 2 lamps, 1 bed and 1 bike to organize, unpack, and fit into my new home.

Nov 26: Unpack the last box! I had finished moving and settling into my new home in just two days.  Talk about a marathon.

Nov 26-Dec 2: Teach my regular classes + 2 subs… Lots of classes! Lots of sweat! Lots of LOVE.


It has been a crazy journey. I think back to three months ago and I was working a corporate job, floating along in Vancouver.  Fast-forward, and I am now living out a dream job that I have been working towards for years, settling into a new home and a new city all the way across the country, and making life big, bright and beautiful! I had a quiet afternoon yesterday so I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to christen my new oven and kitchen.  I had a craving for banana muffins and SURPRISE – I was missing some key ingredients.  I didn’t let this stop me and thought I would give it a whirl anyways.  What shouldn’t have worked out, did.  I don’t know how, I don’t know why, but these are some of the tastiest gluten free banana muffins I have ever had!


Impossible Banana Muffins:

1 1/2 C GF All-purpose flour (I use Pamela’s baking mix)
1/4 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp cardamom
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
2 brown, overripe bananas
1/4 C applesauce
2 Tbs egg whites
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 C coconut sugar
Optional: add in some nuts, dried fruit or chocolate chips if you are feeling frisky! I added in some refined sugar free chocolate chips because #yesplease.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Mix your dry ingredients together (flour through baking powder).  In a separate bowl, mix your wet ingredients together (bananas through coconut sugar).  Fold the wet into the dry *JUST* until combined.  (This is CRUCIAL as you do not want to over mix your batter.  If you do, it will be gummy, gross and icky.  Use a deft hand my friend.)

Pour into muffin liners in your pan.

Bake for 16-19 minutes, or until the tops bounce back when lightly pressed.

I made 9 muffins, you could make them slightly smaller and do 12, but why cheat yourself on an extra bite?

ENJOY my beauties!




Goodbye Vancouver

As I stand here and look out my balcony I am washed with gratitude, excitement, joy and a touch of sadness.

Gratitude for the many blessings God has given me in this home.  I have lived at the foot of the ocean for so many years now, that falling asleep to the lap of the waves on the shore is my bedtime song.  I have gazed at countless sunrises and sunsets that have left me feeling absolutely tiny in the greatest way possible.  I have been surrounded with a community of friends and family that all share a similar love of the outdoors and adventure.  I am so grateful for the richness of all these gifts.


Excitement for the journey ahead.  I am off to chase the unknown.  I am leaving to start a new chapter in a new city with a new community and a new job.  That is a lot of new.  I am about to write the first pages of what is going to be an extraordinary chapter.  This is going to be epic.


Joy for the fact that I am standing where I have dreamed to be for so long.  I have been working towards this very moment for 5 years.  After over 1,500 rides in 4 different cities over 60 months, I am now a SoulCycle instructor.  I successfully graduated the instructor training program.  I spent 7 weeks in New York City training and learning to become the best coach and athlete I can be.  It took a lot of sweat, passion, food and energy to complete it and man, it was so worth it.


Sadness for the season that has now come to a close.  I moved to Vancouver with my family when I was 5 years old.  Every time I left the city for another modelling contract, I always had a home to come back to in Vancouver.  After 8 years of travelling, I moved to NYC for 3 years, yet always had this place to return to.  Now, at 29 years old, I am the last of my nuclear family to be leaving the city.  It will forever have a piece of my heart and I know I can always return, but for now, this is the last page of what was a beautiful chapter of life.


Vancouver, I love you.

Toronto, you have some very large shoes to fill.



Fitness, Lifestyle

SoulCycle Training – Week 5



Can you believe it? No? Me either.  I am stunned that we are already into Community Ride week.

Week 5 training was about leaning into what we have learned, practicing, and asking any last minute questions.  At this point, we need to trust in the training, knowledge and advice we have been given.  We need to trust that all the information is stored somewhere in our brains and at the right time, we will tap into it.  Now, in order to tap into the knowledge base, we need to have a calm brain and body so that it can just flow through us.

The incredibly exciting task at hand is for all 41 of us to complete our Community Rides.  If you are no where near the SoulCycle world, Community Rides are when new trainees teach a regular class to the public and a training officer will sit in the room and then share feedback 1-on-1 so we know what we do really well, and where we need to fine-tune.  You can sign up for all of our classes online and they are FREE! How exciting for you! A free SoulCycle class with a bunch of rad, excited and talented instructors.


What can you expect from MY class?

  1. A TEAM atmosphere
  2. More resistance than you think you can push through (but I know you can🙂)
  3. SWEAT…a ton of sweat…so hydrate properly
  4. High-fives, fist pumps, air kisses, handle-bar smacking…all the things
  5. Mountains (figuratively speaking…although it will *feel* literal) with sweet views from the top
  6. Quirky comments that fly from my mouth before I filter them
  7. Knowledge bombs about anatomy, nutrition, life
  8. Rad music from all genres
  9. Growth: mental, physical, emotional, spiritual…all the growth in all the ways
  10. A coach who is tremendously passionate about your well-being and teaching you how to SHINE YOUR LIGHT BRIGHT

So book those bikes, find me on Instagram ( @tiastake ) and let’s find some epic hills and show them what a BOSS team we make!