Category: Wellness

Meet Jenn & Geoff


Geoff and Jenn would be happy to shake your hand, but make sure they haven’t just come in from the garden. After moving into the Gramercy New Albany, one of the first things the couple did was get a plot in the community garden. “We grew arugula, beets, tomatoes, some herbs, and lots of jalapeños. It was great having the addition of all that fresh produce in our daily diets all summer. Fresh, healthy food is a key element to our lifestyle, and we really enjoyed the opportunity to grow it ourselves.”

The couple explained that lifestyle was the central reason behind the their move. Choosing this Kaufman community supported a larger shift they were making in their lives—to add more time and space that would allow them to grow their business and nurture their personal lives.

The fact that The Gramercy is just a mile from their store, VeloScience Bike Works, is one piece of the equation. “Time we would have spent mowing, raking leaves, and fixing up the house has now been spent developing our business and our pet projects like Sophia’s ReCycle, which has provided dozens of bikes to kids whose families couldn’t afford them.”

For a couple that loves to be physically active, the fitness center has practically been an extension of their apartment. Jennifer teaches the Spinning classes and enjoys yoga and bootcamp, while Geoff said when weather prevents him from training at one of the parks or country roads nearby, he loves that the facility is just a short walk from their doorstep.

Having more time has also translated into taking more joy in their living space. They said they fell in love with the styling and decor, especially how the layout provided a sense of open space and brightness. Geoff explained, “Since moving here we’ve been devouring books. The New Albany Library is a great resource, and for the first time in many years we’ve been able to enjoy having access. Living healthy lifestyles and accomplishing ambitious athletic goals are both important to us, and so much about The Gramercy makes achieving these goals much easier.”

Meet Pratima & Ashwin


When Ashwin and Pratima look back on the life they had when they were students, one thing they remember fondly is the community they were a part of. To them, community meant activities, friendships, and shared philosophies—all things that enabled them to be the people they wanted to be. So even though they were one of the first residents of 600 Goodale, they were thrilled to find that the community was already thriving.

It started with fitness. Working out has given Ashwin and Pratima more than just physical benefits. The couple said one of the highlights of group fitness classes is that while they are exercising they are also getting to know their neighbors—making working out as much fun as going out! Pratima remembers how easy it used to be to find excuses not to work out, but she said Kaufman made it so easy to hit the gym that they both made it a habit. “Now we work out several days of the week without having to leave our building, and spend more time focusing on our mind and body with yoga classes twice per week!”

While they now spend more time taking care of their health, Ashwin and Pratima said they love that they can spend less time taking care of their recycling, now that recycling bins are just a few steps from their apartment. “Before we moved here we would pile up all our recycling in a corner of the apartment, then pile it all up in our car and drive to a recycling center. Kaufman has relieved us of that headache with the Go Green campaign.”

Beyond just recycling, the couple said they love the community’s involvement with Besa, an organization that helps connect people with volunteer opportunities throughout the area. Pratima said, “We really enjoy giving back to the community, and when we were students, community service opportunities were much more accessible and available. But Kaufman’s association with Besa has given us the opportunity to start being part of a community once again.”

Don’t think that for this couple life is all work though. Pratima said the atmosphere at 600 Goodale provides plenty of opportunities for them to relax. “The awesome staff at the office—especially Lauren, Reika and Liz—make us feel instantly at home, and the courtyard is wonderful. It is a perfect spot for relaxing, with the pool, fire pit, outdoor grilling area, cabanas, and a beautiful view of the Olentangy River.”

Pratima said she thinks moving to 600 Goodale has made a wide-reaching impact on their lives. “One big thing that has changed is our appreciation for an apartment that we actually love. It has made us realize how important it is to be in a place that fits in with our philosophy and needs, including getting the opportunity to be part of a community that makes a positive impact in people’s lives.”

Meet Jessica


Meet Jessica in the exercise room. Meet her by the pool. Meet her around the fire pit. Or meet her in the great room. Since moving into 600 Goodale, Jessica has found that home isn’t just the apartment she loves—even though she’ll tell you all about how her granite counter tops put the finishing touches on her space and make cooking more fun—it’s also the features surrounding it that enable her to relax and enjoy doing her favorite things.

Jessica said being able to work out in the exercise room right in the building really appealed to her, and what made it better was that it inspired her boyfriend to start working out with her. But that was just the beginning. Jessica told us that many aspects of 600 Goodale fit her lifestyle—her desire to be active, involved, and connected to her community—both personally and professionally.

“I absolutely adore the pool area—we had so much fun even in September when we moved in. This fall I had so much fun sitting around the fire pit relaxing and talking to my neighbors,” Jessica told us.

But connecting with people and being social extends into her professional life as well, which is why Jessica described the great room as “fantastic!” after she rented it to host the Columbus Creative Industry Mixer. “It was the perfect way to get everyone together. The atmosphere is inspiring and having the ping pong table there was really fun. It’s also just a great place to network because there are so many interesting people who live here.”

While Jessica enjoys the accessibility of everything literally in her building, she said she also appreciates being so close to downtown Columbus, which she said makes it easy to be involved in the culture of the city.

Julie Wilkes Promotes Inspired Living Through New Ventures


Here at Kaufman, we’re excited to be partnering with Seven Studios to offer fitness and wellness activities to residents at two of our communities: The Gramercy New Albany and 600 Goodale.

Free yoga, spinning, bootcamp and circuit training classes are offered at each community on a weekly basis, and monthly wellness workshops on a variety of topics—from nutrition and time management to financial health and stress management—are in the works.

Additionally, Kaufman residents receive a 25% discount on any class package at Seven Studios.

Kaufman’s relationship with Seven Studios Owner Julie Wilkes began in 2012, when Julie hosted the first annual Inspire The World Day at The Gramercy New Albany.

“We share a common vision of helping to bring positive energy to those around us, and building up a stronger city based on health, wellness, kindness and connectivity,” Julie says, adding that she appreciates how our leadership and employees live our values in everything we do.

Julie’s own commitment to inspired living is what prompted her to open Seven Studios in June.

“Opening a studio provides me the opportunity to reach more people, and share positive messages and inspiration,” she says.

Everything Seven Studios does—and even its name—can be tied back to a concept Julie has created called “The 7 Life Miracles.”

“These are seven areas of awareness that, when we are focused on them, open up possibilities in our lives,” she says.

The concept is also the subject of her forthcoming book “The 7 Life Miracles.” It will be available in paperback and in e-book format next year, and sold at, as well as several online and brick-and-mortar bookstores.

“The book is one of the messages I believe my life was meant to share, and so it is an honor to be able to share the inspiration with the rest of the world,” Julie says. “It will inspire you, at times bring you to tears, and it will challenge you to try out small things that help you to tap into the miracles in your life every day. I believe this book will change the life of anyone who reads it.”

To view a schedule of fitness classes offered by Seven Studios at The Gramercy and 600 Goodale, visit

Second annual Inspire the World Day takes place at The Gramercy New Albany


During a goal-setting workshop three years ago, Julie Wilkes was encouraged to come up with a “big, hairy, audacious goal.” After reflecting on what matters most to her, Julie came up with the idea for Inspire the World Day, an event designed to create a greater community of people focused on health, happiness and positively impacting the world around them.

“We have so much talent in Central Ohio, and I wanted to showcase all of the amazing health and wellness professionals that people can learn and be inspired from, all while doing something good for others,” she says.

The second annual Inspire the World Day will take place Saturday, August 24 at The Gramercy New Albany, located at 5935 Central College Rd. The event kicks off at 8 a.m. with sunrise yoga and concludes at 5 p.m. with happy hour and a live musical performance by the Wheatgrass Revival Band.

A speech by plane crash survivor Skip Vachon, two panel discussions (one of which features Kaufman Development CEO Brett Kaufman), and a digital photo scavenger hunt are also among the day’s activities.

When choosing speakers for the event, Julie says she kept several criteria in mind.

“I looked for real life people who are out there impacting the world for the better,” she says. “I looked for stories of overcoming odds to live a powerful life. I looked for professionals that could add a variety of topics and interests, and who think outside of the box. I looked for professionals who walk their talk.”

Giving back is another prominent theme at Inspire the World Day, which is why the event’s net profits will be donated to Make-A-Wish of Central Ohio.

Those who participate in the event will leave with a renewed sense of energy, Wilkes says, adding that past attendees have even called it life-changing.

“We promise a day of inspiration, motivation, education, challenge, fun, laughter, and impact,” she says.

To learn more about Inspire the World Day, or to register, visit

Spinning Improves Cardio Fitness, Strength


Several years ago, Jennifer Clark’s husband, Geoff, suggested she join him and his cycling friends for a class at a nearby spin studio. As a runner, she needed to crosstrain, especially during the winter months when running outdoors isn’t exactly pleasant, so she went along.

One of the spin studio’s instructors quickly stood out to Jennifer. In fact, he would later become her mentor.

“His movements on the bike mirrored the up-tempo beats of his music while at the same time being physically challenging,” she says. “It wasn’t like any other spin class I had ever taken, and I was hooked.”

Jennifer started teaching spin classes of her own about four years ago, and she seems to have borrowed from her mentor.

“I incorporate the tempo of the music to dictate the level of intensity, and the rider controls the amount of resistance, but the music dictates your pedaling speed,” she says. “A well taught spin class shouldn’t be drudgery. It should be fun and exciting and over before you know it!”

Jennifer contends that the cardiovascular fitness and strength that spinners develop will help them burn fat faster and train their bodies to use energy more efficiently.

“If you are a cyclist, it will have a direct impact on your performance on the bike,” she adds.

Jennifer would know. She and her husband own a bike shop—VeloScience Bike Works— in New Albany.

“Knowing proper form on a road bike transfers to spin bikes, so making sure everyone in my class is fitted properly on their bikes is important,” she says, adding that any guidance she can give—from equipment to apparel and shoes—is helpful for someone who may want to transition to road riding.

However, Jennifer insists that spin classes are for everyone, not just cyclists.

“It’s a great and challenging cardiovascular workout, and it can be a great substitute for outdoor riding, whether you ride outdoors or not,” she says. “It’s a terrific way boost your fitness level with little impact and improve your health.”

Jennifer teaches spinning at The Gramercy on Tuesdays from 7-8 a.m. She also co-teaches spin yoga at The Gramercy on Saturdays from 9:30-10:30 a.m.

Both classes are offered by Fitness in the City, a company committed to supporting local professionals and businesses that make fitness a lifestyle. Visit to register for a class.

Why Yoga is for Everyone


Jessie Seldal started dancing at age 3. Nine years later she started cross training in yoga and it wasn’t long before the Redondo Beach, California native was hooked.

“It just makes you feel good in every possible way,” she says. “You never stop learning and growing in your practice. It’s always a fresh new day on the mat.”

Yoga also helps build strength, improves flexibility, and instills a sense of grace− on and off the mat, she says.

Contrary to popular belief, yoga is not just an hour of stretching.

“There are many different forms and schools of practice, and I promise there is one that can appeal to everyone based on individual need,” she says.

Another common misconception is that yoga is only for women.

“I know many men are reluctant to try yoga, but I have consistently had men in my classes and they love it,” she says. “They find it challenging and the added flexibility that can be gained in yoga translates well into strength training, sports, running, etc.”

Even if you think yoga isn’t for you, or you’ve tried it but didn’t like it, Jessie encourages you to attend one of her classes at The Gramercy New Albany.

“Give me a chance to change your mind,” she says. “You never know. Yoga could change your life. It changed mine and continues to shape my world today.”

Jessie teaches Vinyasa Yoga at The Gramercy on Mondays from 7:30-8:30 p.m. She also co-teaches Spin Yoga at The Gramercy on Saturdays from 9:30-10:30 a.m.

Both classes are offered by Fitness in the City, a company committed to supporting local professionals and businesses that make fitness a lifestyle. To register for a class, visit

Hospitality 101: Ginger & Birch’s Guide to Hosting an Outdoor Party


[Content by Ginger & Birch | Images by Lily Glass]

Hosting comes naturally to some. To others, that balance of creating an enjoyable evening for friends while enjoying the evening yourself is a struggle. I have a couple tips help you attempt both!

1. SIZE: Think about the size of space you will have. Fill it, but don’t over fill it. Keep your group manageable.

• Cost: You want to treat your guests well without over extending yourself financially.
• Time: Consider how much time you want to visit with each guest.
• Preparation: What can you realistically manage preparing for number of people invited?

2. MUSIC: Hosting a brunch for your girlfriends will require a much different playlist than a paella party in the back yard. It’s important to create an experience using all senses.

3. FOOD ( + food allergies ): Food allergies are becoming more widely accepted. If restaurants are adjusting, so should a good host. If you don’t already know, reach out to your guests individually. Be prepared to create a meal that is appropriate for all types of allergies.

4. ENVIRONMENT: Are you hoping for easy conversation? An easy barbecue and eating under the open sky might be your best option. If you are inviting a mixed group and hoping for new relationships to be made, consider hors d’oeuvres and drinks in different rooms, forcing people to walk around.

5. PLAN: Good planning relieves stress. What can be made ahead of time, the day before up to the hour before. Cleaning the house ahead of time and pulling out your dishes the night before can help avoid last minute stress.

*Bonus // If your guests offer to bring something, graciously accept. A good host can do it all, but a gracious host invites people to be a part of the experience.

{ Recreate this Grilled Paella Party }

1. SIZE: This recipe feeds six, invite accordingly

Cost varies based on cost of seafood, but plan for around $60.

TIME: prep time 20 minutes / cook time 35 minutes
Preparation: All ingredients can be measured and chopped ahead of time.
Set each ingredient in a different bowl so it’s easy to pour.

2. MUSIC: Think hot summer, Motown or even something with a spanish feel to go along with the dish.

3. FOOD: Make sure guests don’t have a seafood allergy, you can always switch out seafood for chicken or veggies (recipe here).

4. ENVIRONMENT: This party is best in the backyard around the grill. The cook can easily participate in conversation while manning the grill, drink in hand.

5. PLAN: Shop, clean and pull dishes the night before. You will only need to set aside time to prepare ingredients the day of.

6. ENJOY! Enjoy your company, the weather and the amazing food you’ve prepared!

Ginger & Birch is a collaboration between Aaron & Ashley Wilcox. By day, Aaron is a surgery resident and Ashley is a graphic designer. They share a love for hosting people in their home and cooking good food. They believe sharing meals creates authentic community and gives a chance for real conversation to be had.

Fitness in the City is “Thinking Green” This Spring


Here at Fitness in the City, we’ve been “thinking green” all month, from creating St. Patrick’s Day juice recipes to incorporating more green leafy vegetables into our every day diet. As March comes to an end, we’re looking forward to the unveiling of Spring’s green buds. Spring has a way of rejuvenating energy levels, and now is the perfect time to focus on a healthy diet.

Clean eating (fresh fruits and vegetables, dairy and lean meats) provides a great natural energy boost. Every day we are met with an array of “energy” options such as sodas, highly caffeinated drinks and monster energy drinks that contain chemicals, preservatives and unnatural ingredients that wreak havoc on our bodies. Clean eating breaks foods down in order to properly fuel your body with natural sugars, giving you more energy to work out and carrying you through to the finish line of each and every day.

Clean eating also promotes healthier skin and appearance due to increased hydration. Drinking water eliminates toxins from your body immediately, thereby rejuvenating your hair, skin and body. Those same toxins contribute to sluggish feelings, and eliminating them will give you an added energy boost.

Fitness in the City’s Cameron Walker challenged herself to a 21 day clean diet, and she experienced firsthand the benefits of an energized, clean eating lifestyle. She said, “There was a remarkable change in my overall appearance, energy and productivity. I felt more focused and alive. Even though spring has not quite sprung, I got an early start on my own rebirth.”

Don’t just take our word for it. Share your clean eating experience with us. Connect with us on Facebook or Twitter to let us know how you’re thinking green.


Written by: Fitness in the City

5 Ways to Promote Heart Health


In honor of American Heart Month, we asked our partners at Fitness in the City for a few tips to focus on heart health.

5 Ways to Promote Heart Health

By: Fitness in the City

In the spirit of Saint Valentine, Fitness in the City wishes you and your special loved ones a Happy Valentine’s Day. We don’t ask for anything in return other than for you to love YOUR heart. That’s right! February is not only the month of romance and love, it’s National Healthy Heart month. Here are five ways to show your appreciation to your heart:

1. Including fish in your diet gives your heart a boost. Salmon and tuna are a great source of Omega-3. Omega-3 is an essential fatty acid, but our bodies don’t produce it naturally. Don’t like fish? Try fish oil supplements. (If you are on medication, check with your physician first!)

2. Increase your daily cardio by 30 minutes. Make your heart a priority during your workout and focus on a target rate of 120 beats per minute. This helps maximize blood flow and making your heart stronger.

3. Eat healthy fats. Olive oil, avocados and walnuts are a few of the foods that contain healthy fats, which will prevent you from overeating.

4. Do your chores. That’s right, house chores like yard work and vigorous vacuuming are a great way to get your heart rate up and be good to your heart without missing a step of your already productive day.

5. Weight control is key to keeping your heart healthy and happy. Incorporating all of the above will allow you to keep your weight under control. Your heart will love you for it.

There you have it! Being mindful of our hearts will lead to a healthy quality of life. Take small steps if you have to, but remember, be good to your heart.

For updates and health and fitness tips, like Fitness in the City on Facebook and follow them on Twitter @fintesinthecity.