I made it my mission this year to be one of those people who has a solid workout routine.

I've always wanted to be more toned, but I was never fully willing to put in the effort. My old exercise routine used to consist of walking to and from work. If I wanted to see the results I was hoping for, I knew I needed to step it up. Everyone talks about that "wall" you must breakthrough before you start to actually enjoy exercise, so I decided to enroll in a few classes a week to get me motivated. I even paid for a month of classes upfront so I'd have no excuse to miss them!

I thought my first spin class was the hardest thing I've ever done - oh boy, walking up a flight of stairs the next day was agony! But I pushed through the pain and felt pretty proud after I'd finished my third class in one week. I got chatting to the trainer afterward and told her about my muscle pain.

She advised that it's super important to take the right vitamins to ensure that your body has what it needs to recover. I'd been taking multivitamins for years and assumed they would suffice. But she insisted that I check out MadeFor_ - a customized vitamin subscription.

They curate the perfect blend for you after you take a quiz and answer questions about your eating habits or fitness targets. They also have pre-packs that are tailored to support specific goals. I checked out the MadeFor_ site and saw that you can skip their quiz and select a Fitness Pack that was designed for people who are working out regularly and trying to lose weight.

The Fitness Pack was designed by a team of expert nutritionists with a specific purpose in mind. It contains a bunch of vitamins with names that I'd never heard of, but MadeFor's site gave a great breakdown of what each component was for. I learned so much about what my body needs, both pre and post-workout: CLA, which aids fat loss and helps provide energy pre-workout as well as glucosamine for joint protection.

Meet CLA: The Supplement equivalent to 2 cups of espresso (with none of the negative side effects) --- Speeds up metabolism, Promotes fat loss, Protects joint health & Gives you plant-based energy

I never realized that magnesium is essential for muscle function, but its levels deplete when you sweat. So I was glad to see it was included. The Fitness Pack also includes Astaxanthin and Vegan Omega 3, which help support your immune system and heart health. It seemed like the ideal way to give my body the best chance at success. The dream team of vitamins is rounded out with B-Complex, which plays a vital role in organ function and energy production.

When my MadeFor_ box arrived, I loved that everything was broken into daily packs, so I knew exactly how much of each to take every day. It's so easy to grab a pack on my way out the door every morning! With my subscription, I never have to worry that I'll run out. I surprised myself when I finished my first month of keeping up a fitness routine.

Thanks to the CLA pill, I honestly noticed a huge spike in my energy levels. It's designed to help you maximize your workouts and contains caffeine, which speeds up your metabolism and gives you the energy you need to push yourself when you start to feel fatigued.

My muscles and seem to rebound much quicker post-workout, and my energy levels have massively improved. That's because my body has what it needs to recover. I never imagined that supplements could make my workouts less grueling, but MadeFor_'s perfect combo of vitamins helps me breakthrough that "wall" and keep going.

Even though working out still isn't my favorite thing to do, I've finally settled into a routine that works for me. And I'm finally I'm starting to see results! It costs under $2 a day when you sign up for the 6-month subscription. It helped keep get into the habit of taking a daily vitamin because I stocked up and always have it on hand, plus I saved 20%! The Fitness Mix has made staying on this new healthy path a lot easier and I feel better than ever. 10/10 recommend.

UPDATE: Madefor_ is extending a LIMITED TIME offer to get your first 3 Boxes For 30% OFF Today Using Code: GET30X3

It takes 3 months for the vitamins to have their full effect on your body so we'd recommend the 3 or 6 month plan.

TV Features

How TV's "Good Cops" Promote Dangerous Narratives About Real-Life Police

Shows like Brooklyn Nine-Nine make cops seem harmless, an illusion tainted with centuries of racism.

Two summers ago, during one of the darkest periods in my personal life, I found solace in Brooklyn Nine-Nine.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine is a sitcom that stars Andy Samberg as Jake Peralta, an NYPD detective with an impressive track record of solved cases despite his goofy, unsophisticated demeanor. Since its premiere in 2013, the show has been commended for its representation of LGBTQ+ and BIPOC people; the recurring cast includes two very smart (and never overtly sexualized) Latina women, as well as two Black men in the precinct's top roles. In 2018, the show received a GLAAD Media Award for its depiction of queer characters. Throughout its seven seasons, Brooklyn Nine-Nine has addressed serious issues like workplace sexual harassment, reconciling with an absent parent, and coming out to disapproving family members, all while retaining a sharp, tasteful sense of silly humor. Rotten Tomatoes has given multiple seasons of Brooklyn Nine-Nine a perfect 100% rating, likening it to "comfort food."

Keep Reading Show less

Is Britney OK?

Spears called out the paparazzi for the first time since the mid 2000s, raising eyebrows and possibly pointing to an unraveling icon.

Spears is not amused,

Image Group LA/Getty Images

Britney Spears has been hounded by the press and paparazzi for over two decades now.

Lately, her social media page is not only filled with typical mom quotes, but also more personal messages about her wellness and life. Her first Instagram story, however, diverged from these patterns.

After yachting with her boyfriend, Britney took to Instagram to introduce a "conspiracy theory" she's been working on:

"Hello, and please don't judge me, I look haggard right now. But my question to all of you is: a lot of fans in our world today, they always are subject to really criticize people and say that the pictures and videos that they're posting are either not on time or they're fake.

"But no one ever really asks: Are the paparazzi pictures fake, and do the paparazzi people do stuff to the pictures and is the news really real? It's a conspiracy theory that I'm actually interested in. Yesterday I went swimming. I look like I'm 40 pounds bigger [than I am today]. This is how I am right now, and I'm skinny as a needle. You tell me, what is real?"

While Spears is in fact "skinny as a needle" and toned like a goddess, angles were obviously a factor.

She tends to be sillier on her Instagram than some of her pop peers, but the pressure and refocused spotlight may be getting to her. With the #FreeBritney movement and on-going concern for Britney's mental health, it's difficult not to take note of the manic expression on the star's face in the video. The proud gym rat prioritizes her physique, but calling out the paparazzi for the first time since the mid 2000s raises eyebrows and possibly points to an unraveling icon. Spears' distrust of the media is understandable, as the traumatizing tabloid era and Britney frenzy would make anyone distrustful and full of disdain. Hopefully, the media can soon regain her trust to help drive the #FreeBritney movement forward.