IMBY Inspo

IMBY Inspo: Helaine Knapp, CITYROW

Our weekly blog series highlighting the women that inspire us

Helaine Knapp, City Row

Helaine Knapp
Founder & CEO, CityRow
New York, NY

RIGHT NOW: WHERE ARE YOU, WHAT ARE YOU WORKING ON, AND WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE ITEM YOU’RE WEARING?

Sitting at my desk in my apartment, I’m playing catch up from last week/ the weekend and prepping for the week ahead. And I’m in leggings, Lululemon’s align pant – they are definitely my favorite.

SUM UP YOUR STYLE IN ONE SENTENCE.

My goal is to run an empire in a Lululemon jumpsuit, so that definitely has influence, but I’m a big fan of athleisure in general. I’m the CEO of a wellness brand so I love pieces that are more than just functional, they must be fashionable, have an edge and play in both athleisure and normal everyday wear. Lately that’s a lot of mesh, leather and overall pieces that play well with activewear even if they are not meant for it.

WHAT INSPIRES YOU ABOUT THE WORK YOU DO?

It might be cliche, but it really is the clients. The concept for CITYROW was born out of what I craved in a workout that didn’t exist and turns out there are thousands of people out there who were in the same boat (pun intended). When people write in or stop me at the studio and tell us how this has changed their life, they feel great, they’ve seen changes and their body is strong, that’s an amazing feeling– to know I had a part in their happiness.

HOW DO YOU LIVE ‘MINDFULLY?’

It’s not easy and definitely doesn’t come naturally to me – I’m always multi-tasking and trying to get 1,000,000 things done, but I’m conscious of being present with my friends, family, and team. Lately, that means phone away, no computer and really listening and being present.

WHAT’S THE FIRST THING YOU DO WHEN YOU WAKE UP?

Turn on my Nespresso. I love it and I can’t do much before it. Then I usually foam roll & stretch before taking a look at emails and my schedule for the day and getting to it!

HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE YOU TO GET READY IN THE MORNING?

If my hair is done, I can be ready in 20-30. I think that’s pretty fast, right?

WHAT’S YOUR GO-TO WORKOUT?

CITYROW – Duh.

WHAT DO YOU DO TO KEEP YOUR LIFE (AND CLOSET!) A LEAN, MEAN, CLUTTER-FREE MACHINE? 

I read the Mari Kondo’s Konmari book last year and while I can’t say I practice 100%, I definitely love to throw things away and definitely keep things lean and clutter-free. There’s no point in keeping something that you don’t love and don’t wear – even if it was expensive and your mom bought it for you – it’s not doing anything sitting in your closet making you angry!

YOU’RE A BUSY BABE. HOW DO YOU BALANCE WORK, HEALTH, AND YOUR RELATIONSHIPS?

This is maybe the biggest challenge, especially because some of the busiest times for our studios are on the evenings & weekends. Combine that with the fact that, I’m in athleisure 99% of the time and also coming from a workout somewhere in the city, happy hours, & dinners are not as easy as they used to be! That said, it’s very important to have balance so I make fit-dates with friends, get sweaty dinners (it’s acceptable in MOST places), and build time into my schedule to prioritize relationships and myself.

WHAT PODCASTS OR BLOGS DO YOU KEEP UP WITH?

How I Built This is an amazing and inspiring podcast. A bit of a carryover from my previous Tech Start-up Days, I probably click on more Mashable articles in my newsfeed than anything else!

WHO DO YOU ADMIRE?

My family is definitely #1 (I’ve got some badass family genes), but on the business front, I’m a big fan of strong brands, particularly in new spaces with power women at the helm. I’m a big fan of Alli Webb of Drybar, I think she (with her team) have done an incredible job building a strong brand and she’s a power woman who has to balance it all. That’s #goals in my mind.

FAVORITE SPOTS FOR A HEALTHY MEAL?

Hu Kitchen – I’m probably at one of their locations at least once a day.

WHITE HOT LIGHTENING ROUND– GO!

HEELS OR FLATS? Neither – sneakers

BUSINESS OR CASUAL? Is athleisure casual? 😉

EARLY MORNINGS OR LATE NIGHTS? Late nights… until like 10

NEW YORK OR LA? NY

COFFEE, TEA, OR MATCHA? COFFEE

COMPLETE THIS SENTENCE: LIVING INTENTIONALLY MEANS… taking it all in and embracing opportunities every day. We only have one life, enjoy it!

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