Since I joined the YMCA three years ago, I’ve watched the people swimming laps from the lookout windows above the pool and talked about how I should add swimming into my workout rotation. There’s been no shortage of phone calls or discussions with my close friend and fitness partner about how we’d add swimming in “soon,” yet somehow, we never did dip our toes into the pool.
A month or two ago I had to switch up my workout routine as I’d developed a pain in my mid-section that I thought was a hernia (the good news is, it’s not!). I knew I needed to lay of the heavy lifting and other core-dominant movements for a while, so I switched to all running. While I do love running and it is a part of my usual fitness rotation, I rather quickly needed something else to keep things interesting. I think you know where I’m headed (with a towel in hand)…
I dipped my toes in the pool! To be clear, I am NOT a swimmer. I like to swim but never learned how to properly execute any of the swim strokes.
I apprehensively approached the pool on the day of my first swim workout, sure that I stood out like a sore thumb. As I slid into the water, I was the only person without goggles, a swim cap or an official “fitness” swimsuit. As I begin to swim, I was also the only person doing “frogger” strokes and kicks instead of the graceful gliding of freestyle. In a matter of minutes, I was tired! Determined not to quit, I devised a strategy to stay in the water for 30 minutes. Where the water was shallow, I’d walk while stroking with my arms. As soon as the water deepened, I’d swim. I continued with this strategy for the next few weeks’ worth of swims.
Let’s fast forward to the past two or three weeks – I’m still “froggering” away (a friend is going to give me some freestyle lessons soon) but the walking while stroking is a thing of the past! Each swim is 30 minutes minimum of nothing but swimming, and the time flies!
While I’m still definitely not a “swimmer,” I’ve decided that I’ve earned the title of “sort of swimmer.” And with that, I’m awaiting the arrival of an official “fitness” styled swimsuit in the mail. I still haven’t qualified for the goggles or swim cap, but, we all need things to look forward to, right?
Do you have something that’s been on your list to try “soon”? Take the plunge! You’ll be happy you did; I promise. In the meantime, I’ll be at the Y “keeping calm and swimming on.”
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Cardiometabolic Disaster Brewing
Did you know that we are facing an epidemic unrelated to Covid-19 that is potentially killing half of our population? An epic rise in high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity, fatty liver disease, adult-onset diabetes and Alzheimer’s has been seen in the last 2 decades or more. It is estimated to affect 1 in 3 persons in the US with a higher prevalence occurring in women. One of the main culprits besides the standard American diet is the lack of blood sugar regulation and resulting insulin resistance.
We need to go back to fundamentals of nutrition to build a foundation for addressing this dire issue. Increasing fruit & vegetable consumption along with soluble & insoluble fiber intake, exercise, adequate sleep, stress management, & improving our microbiome are just a few examples of where we can begin. Reducing processed food intake, which ultimately reduces sugar consumption also makes a ton of sense for us all. Beyond that comes discussions of appropriate nutritional supplementation and when necessary, targeted medications. Whether we know it, like it, believe it or not, we are all in this fight together, and this will ultimately make the difference in reversing the course of this newfound epidemic.
Michael Briggs, PharmD, CNC, ICCT serves as COO of Lionville Natural Pharmacy and has been published in The Professional Guide to Complementary & Alternative Therapies, Complementary and Alternative Medicine for Older Adults. The Nursing Drug Handbook Series, and Pharmacotherapy.
Learn more at lionrx.com.
BE MINE, VALENTINE
Valentine’s Fun Run
Saturday, February 12th @ 9:00 AM
Valley Forge National Historical Park (Visitor Center parking lot), King of Prussia
Grab your “solemate” for a free Valentine’s Day Fun Run through Valley Forge Park as part of KOP’s Wellness Week celebration. Details
Plant a Valentine
Saturday, February 12th @ 1:00 PM
Jenkins Arboretum & Gardens, Devon
Kids aged 6-9 will learn about seed sowing and stem/leaf cutting while creating a botanical Valentine. Details
Valentine’s Day Dinner & The Frank Sinatra Show
Monday, February 14th @ 5:00 PM
Brick & Brew Gastropub, Malvern
Tickets include a featured five-course menu with two complimentary drinks, per guest. Enjoy the musical stylings and live interactive showcase from Rich Desimone as Frank Sinatra. Details
Paint Your Pet Valentine
Tuesday, February 15th @ 6:30 PM
Levante Stables, Chester Springs
Join local artist Dawn Joussaint and celebrate your furry Valentine by painting a portrait of them. Proceeds benefit Main Line Animal Rescue. Registration required. Tickets are $50-$65. Details
Galentine's Night Out
Saturday, February 12th
6:00 PM – 9:00 PM
AR Workshop, Malvern
Choose from an array of projects, such as plank wood or porch signs, bath trays, pillow covers or wall hangings. Details
Valentine’s Day Brunch
February 12 & 13: 10:00 AM, 11:15 AM & 12:30 PM
Elwood Park Zoo
Savor a Valentine’s brunch in the zoo’s Canopy Gardens Hall, complete with an animal meet and greet! Guests who prefer to dine alone can send their children (ages 4+) to an animal workshop during brunch. Ticket includes zoo admission. Details
Boards & Booze
Monday, February 14th
6:30 PM – 9:30 PM
In just one extremely fun session you’ll enjoy the sights, sounds, smells and feel of a pro-grade woodshop, make a gorgeous cutting board you can use forever and enjoy whatever snacks and drinks you want to bring! Details
Wine & Chocolate
Weekends in February
Three seatings: 12:00 PM, 2:00 PM & 4:00 PM
Tasting of five diverse wines paired with artisan selections from Éclat Chocolate. Learn more about local grape-growing conditions and Chaddsford’s unique winemaking process, from production to aging and bottling. Reservations required. Details
MASTER A NEW HOBBY
WOW! – Photography Boot Camp I/Camera & Exposure Basics
Wednesdays, February 16th – March 16th
Mondays, March 14th – April 4th
Tuesdays, March 15th – April 5th
The Photography Workshop, West Chester
Learn the important buttons and functions on your DSLR or Mirrorless camera while exploring the compositional elements of a great photograph. Multiple date/time options available. Details
Ebru Paper Marbling
February 19th @ 9:00 AM – 2:00 PM
Historic Sugartown’s Book Bindery, Malvern
This course teaches how to create Turkish Marbling, or Ebru, the Art of Cloud Painting. Details
FOR A CAUSE
Designer Bag Bingo
Friday, February 11th @ 6:00 PM
Hope Community Church, King of Prussia
Join the Upper Merion Police Association for a night of BINGO, raffles and prizes! BYOB! Register online or at the door. Details
Fashion Funds the Cure
Saturday, March 5th @ 1:00 PM
King of Prussia Mall (Bloomingdale Court), King of Prussia
Show your support for the National Pediatric Cancer Foundation while enjoying high fashion, delicious food, cocktails and a silent auction. Details
Beautiful, house trained Lilly the cattle dog mix, is looking for a home.
She is calm, gentle, protective and sweet. Lilly was rescued by Finding Shelter Animal Rescue after living for six years as an intended puppy producer at a puppy mill. When she never had puppies, she was surrendered and is now waiting to join a family of her own. Affectionate and well behaved, Lilly is simply lovely.
Submit an adoption application for Lilly online
Since 1986, Metropolitan Veterinary Associates (MVA), a privately owned hospital and Penn Vet affiliate, has provided the highest quality of veterinary medicine. It is our mission to enhance and improve the lives of our patients through exceptional care. To aid this mission we are practicing out of a renovated 25,000 square foot facility with state-of-the-art diagnostic and therapeutic equipment. We concentrate on specialty and emergency cases, allowing us to dedicate high-level care to the following disciplines: behavioral medicine, cardiology, dentistry, dermatology, emergency, internal medicine, interventional radiology, minimally invasive surgery, neurology, oncology, ophthalmology, radiology (including CT, MRI, and I-131), and surgery.
FURRY FAMILY FUN
Thursday, February 17th
12:00 PM – 5:30 PM
Chester Springs Library, Chester Springs
Stuffed animals like sleepovers too! Drop off your stuffy for a night of reading, games and staying up too late! Enjoy a light breakfast with them the next morning before you bring them home for some much-needed rest! Registration is required. Details
Saturday, February 19th
9:30AM – 11:00 AM (recurring)
Garrett Williamson Barn
Explore the farm and self-guided activities including engaging with sheep, alpacas, horses, chickens, goats and pigs! Details
Frozen Jr. Dressy Attire & Champagne Opening Night
February 18th @ 7:00 PM (other dates also available)
SALT Performing Arts at the Theatre at Yellow Springs
The well-loved characters of Disney’s Frozen will come to life on stage, performing all of the films memorable songs! Details
Casablanca – 80th Anniversary Screening
Sunday, February 27th @ 1:30 PM
The Colonial Theater, Phoenixville
Re-watch this classic on the big screen – don’t forget the popcorn!
Matilda the Musical
Friday, March 10th @ 7:00 PM
Saturday, March 11th @ 7:00 PM
Sunday, March 12th @ 2:00 PM & 7:00 PM
Marple Newtown Performing Arts Center
Enjoy the story of an extraordinary little girl with extraordinary powers as it unfolds on stage! Details
Lots to love on the Main Line this month, from a new Serena & Lily storefront to a soon-to-open taqueria by Jose Garces to an aptly named bar in West Chester…
Serena & Lily Lands on the Main Line
Two months ago, we shared a rumor about a potential Serena & Lily storefront in Haverford. Well, hold on to your Riviera stools, friends…the Serena & Lily Main Line Design Shop officially opens on Sunday, February 13 with a special Open House at its new location at 25 Haverford Station Road. At nearly 4,000 square feet, the shop will stock plenty of favorites from the coastal-inspired home and lifestyle brand, including furniture, bedding, rugs, pillows, wallpaper, lighting, art and décor. Original paintings by local artists Maureen Boyd, Andrea Moran and Kristen Tirney will grace the walls as well. For those with decorating dilemmas (#raiseshand), complimentary room plans and advice are available from the shop’s team of design advisors, either in-store, at your home or virtually (read more)
The Award for Best Bar Name Goes To…
Moods can change in a matter of minutes these days. Thankfully, there’s a bar for that! Now open in downtown West Chester, Good, Bad & Ugly—the newest offering from the Stove and Co. Restaurant Group—puts a modern twist on the beloved dive bar with food served in baskets, classic bar games (think pool, foosball and shuffleboard), happy hour specials, beers served on tap (and by the can) and playful décor. “We want a spot that you can come as you are—whether it’s dressed from work, casual from home, or stylish for a night on the town. We want to tell all sides of the story—the good, the bad and the ugly. All are welcome and invited,” explains co-owner Justin Weathers. This is the fifth establishment that Weathers and his business partner Joseph Monnich have opened in the past two years and the duo’s first-ever bar-focused concept. The menu is small but mighty; highlights include the tap fries made with smoked brisket and beer, buttermilk chicken fingers and the All-American Burger. Happy hour specials are available Wednesday to Sunday, from 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM, and best consumed at the giant, 80-foot-long bar.
1-900-ICE-CREAM Adds Coffee Service... A New Taqueria Comes to Town... No-Trauma Takeout
Got a scoop for In the Loop? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
MARK YOUR CALENDAR
West Chester’s Restaurant Week
Sunday, February 27th – Sunday, March 6th
Downtown West Chester, West Chester
Visit your favorite restaurants to enjoy special multi-course prix fixe menus that will be featured just for the week! Details
Saturday, February 26th
600 S. Broad St., Kennett Square
Bundle up and enjoy winter brews from 65 unique craft breweries during Kennett Square’s annual Winterfest. Food trucks, vendors and live music too. Details
GREEN THUMB (THINKING SPRING!)
(Virtual) Speaker Series: “The Dirty Little Secret of Lawn Care”
Thursday, February 24th @ 7:00 PM
Join host Mike McGrath of “You Bet Your Garden” to discuss the value of lawns as a planetary resource and the harmful reality of the unnecessary chemicals we often use. Details
(Virtual) Learning Together: Jump Start Your Family Garden
Monday, March 21st @ 6:30 PM
Gather your family and learn how to create your own family garden with a gardening kit (mailed to your home prior to class) in this fully online course. The course is designed for adults and kids aged 5-10. Details
At Lankenau Heart Institute, our cardiologists build lifelong partnerships with their patients and deliver heart care the only way they know how: human to human.
Main Line Health
The Baldwin School develops bright, talented girls into confident, accomplished women with vision, global understanding and the determination to make enduring contributions to the world.
At Mathnasium we are changing lives through math!
All students were harmed by covid. We will help build their confidence in math and beyond.
Learning centers in Paoli, West Chester and Glen Mills
Overcome your addiction in 2022.
RCA is a leading provider of drug & alcohol addiction treatment in the Delaware Valley.
Let us help you today
Malvern Prep is an independent Augustinian school for young men in grades 6 through 12, defined by the Augustinian values of Truth, Unity, and Love.
As America’s Oldest Auction House, Freeman’s is always welcoming consignments and available to assist with your collecting needs.
Lionville Natural Pharmacy provides custom medications, nutritional supplements and professional consultations for you and your family, serving our community for 40 years.
Schedule A Consultation
Looking for a fun, active, stress-relieving winter activity? Try dancing! Small class sizes. Couples and singles welcome.
Narberth (610) 668-8870
Paoli (610) 993-9305
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