Imma let you finish but ah, Katie Dickens has the best dance studio of all time. OF ALL TIME.
What is this nonsense, you ask? A broke gal exercises? I thought all she did was complain about being broke?
You’re right. Generally, I’m just yabbering on about how my bank account is getting a big bloody work out, but oh how things have changed!
About 2 months ago, I went to the opening of Dance Barre by Katie Dickens. It’s around the corner from me and there was coffee, so I thought why not go down and get a free coffee…………………… and of course, give it a go.
Previously, the only exercise I did on a regular basis was lifting a wine glass from the table to my mouth (coincidentally, you’re also sore the next day), so I started with Katie being one incredibly unfit and uncoordinated blob girl, I mean broke girl.
Long and behold, I have been obsessed ever since. I immediately signed up for the 7 day free pass, then did the one month unlimited pass, and I am now officially signed up FOR GOOD (or until my bank account runs out of money). The classes are so much fun and Katie has such an incredible and infectious energy, even when you’re slowly dying in a class you keep pushing through.
I’m not going to lie, the first two weeks of Dance Barre my body was like – “Hey Prue, what’s up? WTF are you doing? I’m real fkn sore, srsly da fuk”. I could barely walk, sit down, or do anything, but I promise you, that doesn’t last.
Top 3 reasons DB is the fkn bomb:
30 minute classes – don’t be fooled, 30 minutes isn’t long, but trust me – YA GONNA DIE
SO MUCH BOOTY WERK – my booty needs all the help it can get – DB is here to help all nonexistent booties like mine
Katie’s dance background – the fact that all the workouts incorporate some form of dance makes it so much fun, you forget you’re exercising when there’s fiddy cent playing in the background and you’re trying (/failing) to pop, lock and drop it
#girlsquad – everyone has such a fun and positive attitude, it’s such a welcoming environment (to look your absolute sweaty-worst), it doesn’t matter if you’re a complete gumby like me, YOU WILL BE ACCEPTED!
My favourite DB classes:
RnB Fitness & Groove – so much fun, a good workout, and a great one to laugh at yourself being completely uncoordinated (if you’re me)
Bounce Fit – you’re bouncing on a trampoline. nuff said.
Full Body Method – a full body workout in 30 mins. where do I sign up?!
Dance Cardio – this is one sweaty half an hour, but it’s a lot of fun… and i’d do this ten times over a run any day
Barre Fitness – bloody kills, oh it burns, but it’s so dam good
I am now also participating in her 8 week challenge, so WATCH THIS SPACE.
New #activewear can sometimes be the best motivation. All leggings & crops below are $37 and less!
Shoes: Spendless Shoes
Glasses: London Markets
I’ll start off by leaving you completely gobsmacked. I did not ride a single bike in Amsterdam… EVER.
It feels good to get that off my chest. Although, there really would have been no better place than Amsterdam to actually learn how to ride a bike… hashtag hindsight.
I’ll give you a couple of minutes to let this sink in…
We caught a flight from London to Amsterdam (for less than $100 AUD) and then the train from the Airport to Amsterdam Central. As soon as we stepped out of the station (quite hungover I might add, eating our leftover plane food), we were pretty overwhelmed with how beautiful it was.
We jumped on a tram, missed our spot, then luckily somehow ended up finding the place we were staying. It was in an amazing location on Kannalstraat, Amsterstam, Noord-Holland and less than $50 AUD a night each (#brokegal).
That day we discovered what was to become our favourite locay. The FoodHallen.
You can’t visit Amsterdam without visiting this glorious place. It was about a 10 minute walk from our humble abode, walking over the beautiful canal bridges… trying not to be knocked over by bikes.
The FoodHallen is an incredible hall full of, you guessed it, FOOD! They have dedicated wine bars, beer bars, cocktails, and every type of street market-style food you could ever dream of.
After stuffing your face here, just outside the FoodHallen is a stretch of markets that will 100% put a lil dent in your piggy bank. In saying that, it’s full of unique products you won’t find really anywhere else, which definitely makes it worth more in my books. There was really great jewellery and some amazing clothing stalls. I left with a sailor-style hat and some Ray Ban lookalikes for a total of about $50 AUD.
Our next stop was Vondelpark, which is apparently where the entire population of Amsterdam is chillin. It’s the perfect place for a picnic. You’ll see hundreds of people drinking, eating, running around, lots of PDA, and birthday parties you’ll really want to crash. There’s a cute bar in the middle of the park you can grab a wine and some bread and hummus for cheap.
I had lunch at a place called Saffraan. Can’t recommend it more. It had incredible pasta and even the coffee was good. It’s a super cute corner café. Perfect for people watching.
Of course, you have to visit the IAMSTERDAM sign. If you don’t, did you really go to Amsterdam? It’s absolutely flocking with tourists, so try and go early morning to get a good snap.
Another tourist-driven area is of course the Red Light District. I got to say, it’s incredibly confronting. Before visiting the area I was actually quite happy to go and even see a show there and experience the nightlife. I was curious. However, once we reached the district I did a complete 180. I think you need to at least see it to make up your own mind about it. I definitely see why the locals completely avoid the spot. I personally donot want to be part of funding that industry. It’s quite unbelievable really, and quite a contrast compared to the entirety of Amsterdam itself.
Try and go during tulip season so you can see the beautiful tulip fields, we missed it just by a couple of days which was disappointing.
We tried the Bloemenmarkt flower market, although found this was something you could probably give a miss. It was focused more on growing your own flowers etc. which was not quite something we would be doing in the two days we were there.
EVERYONE speaks English. Everyone is incredibly friendly, will more than likely mock your accent for a harmless LOL and are absolutely more than happy to help you out.
Check out the main shopping strip, Kalverstraat. You’ll find lots of international brands. I, of course, found a couple of keepers in H&M for $30 AUD. The collections are different in Europe, so it’s definitely worth having a look!
Eat ALL OF THE CHEESE. That is all. It won’t be hard to find.
Top 3 eats:
Rene’s Croissants: Get churros, and basically any sweet you can dream of
Saffraan: Try the vegetarian lasagne!
Coffee & Coconuts: It’s an old theatre transformed into a cool 4 level oasis. Sit on a beanbag and enjoy a hearty breakfast and one or ten cups of delicious coffee.
Written for Student Flights.