Upper West Side mom of two, Jamie Hess’ love affair with New York City revolves around fitness. She was a competitive athlete growing up, competing at the national level in equestrian showjumping, but had always been a yo-yo dieter and struggled with body image issues. Then her world changed when she met her husband, George.
“Both of us had a love for fitness, but it wasn’t until we came together that something sparked,” she told Urban Jungle. “We started training together, attending classes like Barry’s Bootcamp and SoulCycle, and running races (we ran the NYC marathon in 2016). Fitness was no longer a chore; it was the bedrock of our relationship and the source of so many shared joyful memories. That’s when it became a lifestyle!”
Not only did it become a lifestyle, but the pair managed to turn their healthy lifestyle into a business. They are now co-founders of NYC Fitfam and have an Instagram following of nearly 60,000. It’s there where they share their workout and diet tips and how to balance family, work and fitness.
Hess credits living in Manhattan as the main reason she’s able to live this fit life. “We are spoiled by the accessibility of so many boutique fitness classes, and we take full advantage of it,” she said. “It’s a huge part of why we’d never move out of the city. Additionally, as runners, being so close to Central Park and all of the New York Road Runners races is one of the great joys of our life. Running in Central Park is truly our happy place.”
What are some of her favorite classes? SoulCycle, Barry’s Bootcamp, and Y7 are three of their top faves. They also love training with Courtney Paul, who just started offering his CPX method at the Gansevoort Hotel. And since they are @nycfitfam, the duo gets the kids involved as well. While the newborn isn’t totally active yet, their four-year-old son Mason jumps in on the action.
“He loves doing anything mom and dad are doing,” said Hess. “When he sees us at home doing a plank, he gets right down on the floor and tries one himself. Same with yoga; he can show you downward-facing dog or tree pose as well as any yogi.”
New York Road Runners also has a “Rising Runners” program, and Mason ran his first race at the NYRR / God’s Love We Deliver “Race to Deliver” in November. “He can’t wait to sign up for more as soon as the weather warms up,” she added. “Plus, there’s so much to do to keep him active. We are located within walking distance of at least 10 fabulous parks and playgrounds. Central Park offers play spaces, ponds, waterfalls, tennis courts, friends, and more all literally a block from our home.”
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