Whole30, Round 2

After the holidays, Justin and I decided we needed a reset on our bodies and a reset mentally, given the way we had been attacking every morsel of food in front of us. We were each down 30-40 pounds from two years ago when we first did Whole30, so round 2 began on January 17. We knew the deal this time – so it required no studying, just prepping.

If you haven’t heard of Whole30, join us from under your rock and visit this website. (Just kidding…but really, it’s exploded in the past couple of years). No prepared products, no gluten, no wheat, no dairy, no soy. Just good, whole foods – protein, good fat, veggies and limited fruit.

I got serious on Pinterest and pinned some amazing things and off we went to prepping. Again, the first time we did this I was so over feeling icky in my own skin. I was at my heaviest and just generally unhappy with myself. So I NEEDED to lose weight and this just jump started things. However, this time Justin and I both are much happier with our health and weight – we just needed a reset. And for that reason, this round of Whole30 royally irritated me, if I’m being honest. We know how to eat now – whereas we did not before. I thought it was fine to eat whatever then workout. But now, for the most part, we eat pretty healthy and Whole30 about 70% of the time. So dang it, if I want a peanut M&M in the middle of the afternoon, I want to have one. So where I needed the strictness of Whole30 the first round, I did not enjoy it this time. It aggravated me and made me want to bail completely. I honestly would have if Justin wasn’t shedding like 10 more pounds before my very eyes. He killed it.

But, despite my grumbling, we did find some delicious recipes. You can find most of these on my Whole30 Pinterest Board. We will definitely keep making a lot of these in the regular rotation.

I should also note that we made it 27 of 30 days until we ate this. And I’m not even mad about it.

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That chocolate piñata was delicious and I’d eat it again right now. Because you know, everything in moderation…even moderation.

Whole27 probably won’t catch on.

 

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Spaghetti and Zoodles

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Chicken Fried “Rice” (Cauliflower Rice)

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Tuna Stuffed Avocado Boats

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Chicken and Zuchinni Poppers with Homemade Cilantro Ranch

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Spinach Salad with Homemade Cilantro Ranch

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Costco (Kirkland brand) Smoked Pulled Pork, Sauteed Spinach and Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes

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Chicken Tortilla Soup

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Sweet Potato Hash and a Fried Egg

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Grilled Salmon with Avocado, Cilantro Cream Spaghetti Squash

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Pork Chop with Orange Pecan Pesto

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Buffalo Chicken and Spaghetti Squash Casserole

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Grilled Mahi Mahi, Mango Salsa and Fried Cauliflower Rice

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Pork Egg Roll in a Bowl (probably our favorite!)

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Two Ingredient Pancakes (eggs and bananas)

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Spicy Ground Turkey and Green Bean Stirfry

XOXO,

Jenn

Bike Maintenance 101

A couple weeks ago my friend Kim told our friend Lana and I to sign up for this Bike Maintenance 101 class here in town. We’re all fairly new to riding (I’m the newest) and it wouldn’t hurt to know how to do a couple things on the ol’ bike besides fall off. So for $20, we each signed up for the class. It was over at the Oasis Center here in town which is a non-profit that’s super fabulous. They have a bike shop that provides an after school and summer opportunity for kids to learn how to build and work on bikes. It was an impressive set-up!

First thing’s first though – I have to get my bike TO the class – because it’s a small, hands-on learning opportunity so you BYOB (bring your own bike). When I got the bike back in November, I immediately purchased a rack for my car. Since it turned cold and basically hasn’t quit raining all spring, I haven’t had the need for it yet. So I finally opened the box on Sunday afternoon. I opened the directions and the first page said “for women’s bikes, may need to purchase separate adapter.” Of course you do. Of freakin’ course you do.

I put that out of my mind and proceeded to get the thing on my car. I’m standing in our parking lot, which we happen to share with a bike shop, so I didn’t seem out of place putting this thing on my car. What did seem out of place was that I didn’t know what the heck I was doing. It took a solid half hour or more and I was all but standing on my trunk at some points.

I finally get the thing on there and only smashed my finger in the trunk once. Victory! I retrieved my bike and tried to jam it on there – no dice. The directions do not lie. You need an adapter for a Women’s extra small frame. F.

I went and sat on the porch and surfed the internets for an adapter that would keep my bike from falling off the rack and onto the interstate. I was panicking – because I also REALLY want to haul my bike to the beach soon, and wondered if my adapter would get here on time. Then it hit me – again – I live next to a bike shop! Adapter purchased within two minutes.

It worked like a charm. Although before I took off for class yesterday, I went in and got one of the bike shop employees to come out and look at everything to be sure I’d set it up right. He confirmed that I had.

I successfully drove to class and home and the bike stayed put. I even hit some big bumps to be sure it would stay on. (Better to find out now than on the interstate later). My father would die! (He avoids potholes and speed bumps like the plague. I’m sure his shocks look brand new).

In class we learned how to change a flat (my main mission for going – I’m terrified of getting stranded 10 miles into a greenway), how to clean and tighten your gear and brake cables, how to adjust your shifting thing-a-ma-bobs if your chain is shifting into your spoke or off your gears, etc. Oh! And I learned how to pump up my tires too, and learned that it’s really hard to put 125 PSI into those little flippin’ tires. I mean, I work out, but that was hard pumpin’ y’all.

So, bike maintenance 101 is in the books! Let’s be honest though – if I ever get stranded I’ll probably just cry and then call for help. And if I need a tune up, I’ll either take it to the bike shop I live next to (unless I forget it’s there again), or go to Oasis bike shop’s free bike tune up nights. Yes, for FREE you can go there on Tuesday and Thursday nights (for the time being) and get your bike tuned up. Well, they show you how to do it yourself. But I’d probably just stand there pretending not to know much so they can do it for me.

It wouldn’t really be pretending, I guess.

Plus, Dan (who taught our class) sent this email out today and pretty much won my heart.

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It’s a cat – on a BIKE!? Yes.

Stay on the saddle, people.

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XOXO,
Jenn

My Juice Cleanse Experience — The Juice is Loose!

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**I preface this post by saying, I am not a doctor. What works for me may not work for you. This is my opinion and backed by no professional or medical knowledge about basically anything, ever.**

Several weeks ago I got serious about researching a juice cleanse. I don’t really know why – it was a combination of things probably. I have been really serious about trying to eat healthier foods, watch my calories and overall be healthier since the new year rolled around. I also read about it on Beth’s blog when she did it last year – and I pretty much trust that anything she says is awesome, will be awesome. The day I picked up my juice, she was there picking hers up too – for her third cleanse in six months.

Since it seemed to be the best around, I settled on Juice Nashville – a local company who does not have a brick and mortar storefront – they are a mobile, family-owned, cold-press juicery. That means no preservatives are added, no sugar, no nothing. The juice has a shelf-life of 3 days, so you get it and use it – or freeze it immediately. And if you open a bottle, you drink it within 8 hours. All this to say, it’s fresh, y’all.

So I placed my order for a the 3 day cleanse and was ready to pick it up on Saturday morning. I made sure I had no dinners planned, no fun events, etc. I was just going to hibernate all weekend with my juice and wrap it up on Monday at work.

I went to pick the juice up at the Nashville West Farmer’s Market where Wes (the husband half of the Juice team) sells on Saturdays. As he sifted through paperwork to locate my order, my juicy heart sank. He didn’t have it. Even though I had my confirmation email, something happened and my order was missing. I left thinking I might not be juicing after all – but Stephanie (the wife half of the team) called me as soon as I got to my car and said they were trying to figure out what happened to my order – not to give up yet. I went home and put on my PJs and Tweeted my feelings – and in true 2013 customer service style, Stephanie replied to my tweet in about two minutes and said that she was moving heaven and earth to find my juice.

WOW – customer service gold star for you ma’am. About 45 minutes to an hour later I got a tweet that said “found your juice! Calling you now.” And my cell rang. (I did drink a Naked fruit juice in the meantime that I had in the fridge because I was getting hangry = hungry + angry).

I zipped back down West and got my juice. I could have hugged Wes. I couldn’t believe they were so responsive to my juicing woes and were just so, so nice. Turns out, they had my order all along and the paperwork had just been misplaced so the two couldn’t be matched up.

So, let’s Juice.

The Juice Cleanse includes NO food. No drinking ANYTHING other than water or green tea. (I missed coffee dearly). You drink 5 juices a day (the same 5) and one almond milk a day.

The juices are:

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I’ll be honest – I liked some of these more than others, but I hated none. I LOVED the C Ya – orange, apple, grapefruit and ginger. OMG. Snap – apple, carrot, ginger. Delish. But I think, crazy enough, the almond milk might have been my favorite. I love almond milk.

The Whoa (apple, beet, kale and ginger) was a bit harder to swallow. The Oh Yeah (apple, kale, collard and lemon) got old by the third day. But again, none were terrible. And the nutrients they clearly contain kept me chugging!

The experience:

Were you hungry? Not really. To know me is to know how much I love food. I love to eat. Food = love, to me. If you love me, cook me dinner. Buy me dinner. I love to eat. I exercise so I can enjoy food. Some people eat to live – I live to eat.

So a liquid diet with no chewing and salty food was a real challenge. But was I hungry? Not really. I did yoga Sunday night (day 2), and the calorie burn made me momentarily starve, so I ate a cutie (one of those tiny mandarin oranges). Juice Nashville says if you are desperate, you can have a raw fruit or vegetable.

By the third day I had a screaming headache, but I still think that may have been from three days with no coffee more than anything. I don’t think it was from no food as much as it was caffeine withdrawal. Although I will say, when that last juice was gone, I ate a spoonful of peanut butter straight from the jar. Sorry I’m not sorry.

How did you feel? I felt detoxed, just like they promised. I felt pumped full of vitamins and nutrients and I felt healthy.

Why did you do it? To detox. To cleanse the system. To purge the crap. I did NOT do it to lose weight.

But did you lose weight? Yes. I lost 4 pounds. It was an added bonus – yes. AND, it did jumpstart my fitness this week when I finished the juice. I wanted to keep that four pounds off. I worked out twice a couple days this week. I was determined. But I also ate pizza, which I did crave while I was abstaining from solid foods during the cleanse! Ha.

Let the record show – I just weighed myself this morning and gained every bit of those four pounds back this week. Even with two-a-day workouts and overall watching what I ate, I gained it back. So it’s my advice not to do this cleanse for that reason. Or any cleanse. Clearly.

How did it work for you and would you do it again? I think it totally purged my system. I was drinking a huge glass or two of water between each juice and I was peeing every half hour. My system was cleansed. I was so hydrated – TMI, but my pee was so clear you couldn’t tell I’d peed at all. It was insane. SO I would venture to say that a lot of the weight I lost was water weight and as soon as I started consuming regular food and salt again, it just came right back. I’m not near as hydrated as I was.

Would I do it again – yes. I would definitely buy their juice again and incorporate it into my regular diet, probably before I would juice again. They have lots of other flavors I want to try! But I would juice again if I started feeling sluggish and full of crappy crap. I’d do it again.

Can you work out during the cleanse? I’m no doctor, so I say just do whatever you feel like. I went to power yoga on Sunday evening, two days into the cleanse. This is a 400+ calorie burn class, so it’s intense, and I was totally fine. Again, you aren’t starving yourself – this isn’t a lemon juice and cayenne pepper cleanse. You HAVE nutrients in your system, so just do what you feel like.

How much is it? Lots of people asked me this. It’s not cheap – but when you realize how much fruits and veggies are crammed into every bottle, they can’t be marking it up that much, y’all. It’s quality product, so you pay for it. The three day cleanse was $123 with tax and the refrigerated tote that the juice comes in (which I’ll definitely be using again!). Full disclosure, in the name of stellar customer service, Stephanie gave me half off my juice cleanse because they misplaced my order. Thanks gurl!

So there you have it. Oh – one more thing. Again in the spirit of full disclosure, this juice cleanse did things to my bowels that you would not believe. And the worst day was on the third day when I was back at work. (You’re welcome, coworkers!) I mean, when you’re stockpiling fruits and green veggies in your system and they are in liquid form, there are going to be some touch and go situations. So, that’s all I’ll say about that. Just be prepared, if you do the cleanse.

Huge thanks to Juice Nashville for being overall awesome and wonderful to work with. I can’t say enough good things about Stephanie and Wes, how adorable they are, the customer service they provide and the product they deliver. They truly have it figured out. Nashville needs you – so thanks for being here.

XOXO,
Jenn

New Year–New Habits

If you read my last blog post, and if you know me at all, you know that in (at least the second half of) 2012 I was happy. Happier than I’ve been in a long while. I wouldn’t trade that for anything. However, I would trade the “eh – it’s ok – I’ll deal with it later” attitude I took toward eating that also came along with this happiness.

It’s something I only realized in hindsight, but I was just shoving whatever tasted good into my mouth and not thinking about the consequences. Whew. It added up in a big way. I also blame the amazing cooks at my office who brought in goodies during the holidays, but that’s neither here nor there. 😉

So on Jan. 3ish I got serious about keeping up with my Fitness Pal again on my iPhone and have a fitness goal (we’ll call it that, instead of weight loss goal) by May – our family beach trip.

I call it a fitness goal, because I know I’ll never be the skinny-mini I was in college and don’t really want to be – but I do want to go to work without the zipper on my skirts pinching my muffin top. There I said it.

And I want to just feel good when I look in the mirror.

The first serious week was this week – and I lost 2.8 pounds. We’ll go ahead and call that THREE pounds! I know it just gets harder, but damn – that was a boost I needed to stay on the program.

I’m sticking to 1400 calories a day and trying to work out at least every other day. I’ve also cut back on my wine intake, but still indulged a few nights this week if I had some calories to spare.

If you’re on Fitness Pal – add me and let’s encourage each other. I also love to see what other healthy things people are eating so I don’t get in a rut.

Speaking of – I made a delicious recipe last night from HandletheHeat.com. Curried Lentil Soup. Note – as Tessa did, I did not use the chutney either. I also didn’t find red lentils in the grocery store, so I just used regular dry lentils – Publix brand. Y’all – this dish was so good. It definitely has a lot of Indian flavors in it – obviously, curry – and was really, really good. And low calorie.

Here’s to a continued healthy 2013!

XOXO,
Jenn

I’ve Fallen and I Can’t Get Up

The holidays are upon us, friends. In case you didn’t know it, you can just check my schedule and be reminded. Lawd, things get busy this time of year. This week I actually have THREE nights in a row where I have no obligations, and I don’t know what to do with myself. Last week I had zero free nights. Not that I’m complaining, because those non-free nights are usually filled with boozing and merriment with friends –so, they are commitments I’m willing to make. And even double-book.

This past weekend Dad came in on Friday afternoon. Mom was laid up with a bad cold at home and couldn’t come, so we promised not to have any fun.

We toured the Corsair Distillery here in Nashville, which was really fun. Oops – sorry Mom! It’s in the old Yazoo Brewery space for you Nashvillians. They make gin, whiskey, rum, moonshine, vodka…and probably six other things I’m leaving out. And you get to taste them all at the end. Yes – it’s as much liquor as it sounds like. It didn’t help that we had a high alcohol content beer while waiting on the tour to start – so by about 6:30 p.m. on a Friday I was ready to go to sleep. But, I had a parent to entertain! So, we went to J. Alexanders for dinner then home and watched the first episode of Breaking Bad – trying to get Dad hooked on this one.

Saturday morning Dad and I got up and went to the Girls on the Run 5K. He registered as a normal runner and I was running with my running buddy, Ava. She is the coolest third grader. She PR’d and bested her previous 5K time by 5 minutes! I was so proud of her and we had a great time running. Dad just barely missed the podium and came in 4th or 5th place overall, cause he’s a speed demon. No little girls beat him, which was really all he cared about.

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Dad and I celebrated our athletic efforts with lunch at the Silly Goose (the Goose is Loose!) which I think he really enjoyed. We polished it off with some Jeni’s Ice Cream and his visit was pretty much complete. He headed back home that afternoon and Rog and I went to our first Chanukah dinner that evening!

We had the most delicious traditional Chanukah dinner – thanks Kate and Andy!

Sunday I had my Sunday Funday book club and baked approximately 1,000,000 sausage pinwheels. Seriously – I bought $35 worth of sausage, crescent rolls and cream cheese and just went to town. Consequently, also ate about 100 of them and now feel like poo.

Book Club was awesome, as usual. I love those girls. We did a book swap, too, which is always my favorite because the only thing better than a good book is a free good book! We do our big swap every six months and totally rack up. After about four hours of consuming wine, we also decided to hold our March book club in Palm Springs at Sally’s parents’ house. Sorry I’m not sorry my book club is cooler than yours.

Also, as 30 is rapidly approaching I’m acting more and more like an old lady every day. Last night in the dark I fell down (tripped over an ottoman that I suddenly forgot was there, even though it’s been there for a year or more) and banged my knee (my good knee) SO hard. Then this morning when I woke up I was laying there looking at my phone and I sneezed. I was sort of on my side and jerked my head in some funny manner when I sneezed, and damn near threw my back/neck out. Really? I couldn’t LIFT MY HEAD to sit up and get out of the bed. I just rolled onto my side and off the side of the bed. I landed with another solid “thud” on that same knee. Yes!

I guess I’d rather hurt my neck when I sneeze than pee on myself when I sneeze. That’s next, right? Old age.

Xoxo,
Jenn

Pedaling Off My Turkey

I hope you little turkeys had a lovely holiday weekend! Callie and I spent it in East TN with my family and it was so nice to be home with so many people (and fur people) I love in one room.

Callie made herself right at home in Mom and Dad’s house. Obviously.

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We ate well. I had leftovers for two days that were plates just full of carbs. Potatoes, sweet potatoes, cheese grits, stuffing, etc. It was all so good.

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Of course, as any holiday does, it turned into a Wade family pickin’ and singin’ party.

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Also, any time in Roane Co. that we can, we always catch Drivin’ Blind – my sis-in-law’s Dad’s rock band. Yes – that’s how we roll. Scott and the boys always entertain and we were super impressed with the new lead singer. 🙂

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We headed back to Nashville on Saturday afternoon so we could have whole day to recover from the family fun before heading back to work on Monday.

Sunday morning started with this family snuggle fest on the couch. Callie was such a good traveler, but so glad to be back in her own house! She always has to be a little extra on guard when she’s at her grandparents’ house – in case I try to abandon her there. So, she totally sacked out for about 24 hours straight when we got home – which meant I could sneak in cuddles while she was in a cat coma.

So, little back story. I’ve been sort of interested in buying a bike ever since watching my brother and Dad dominate in triathlons. I have no plans to dominate anything, except staying upright on both wheels, but I’d been sort of interested in maybe doing a Tri Sprint next year. I looked at one bike shop here in Nashville and got bike snobbed (“titanium this, carbon that, Trek schmeck), so I waited until I was home and had my resident experts take me to a couple shops so I could ride some.

Then, I surfed Craigslist and found a really nice Giant Avail that had been posted mere hours before. It was just my size, nearly brand new (for half off) and was colored “Tangerine.” Big Orange, y’all!

So, Kyle (the owner who was selling it for his Momma) and I met up this afternoon. After a quick spin or two around the parking lot and after running all the deets by my little brother, I put ol’ Tangerine in my back seat and headed for home. I looooove it!

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I’ve been over at Centennial Park cruising around on this beautiful day, figuring out shifting and what not. So, who wants to go for a ride!? 🙂

Also, since I work a mere .4 of a mile from my house now, I will soon be one of those dorks riding her bike to work.

Have a great week, little turkeys.

XOXO,
Jenn

It’s Cool — I’ll Just Sleep Here, Too

If you’ve read the blog for long you know my love hate relationship with running. Some days I love it and some days I’d rather bang my face against the wall than run. Several months ago I started switching up my workout routine to try and come out of my “I hate running, especially in the summer” funk. I did a couple of bootcamps, which I loved, got addicted to BarreAmped, which I cannot afford, and bought a couple of random Groupons here and there.

Speaking of – if you are in the Nashville area, I have about 15 day-passes to the Delta gym if you’d like them. Lemme know.

I told myself that as soon as I sold my house I’d get a YMCA membership. All my friends (i.e. all the cool kids) are members and I wanted to be too – but just needed to wait until the damn house sold before incurring any extra expenses. (That’s what grown-ups do…ahem ahem).

Anywho…

So I joined the Y a little over a month ago and HOLY gym rat, Batman. I am one of them. I am LOVING the Y and all the options I have now. I’ve gotten totally addicted to yoga, circuit blast, swimming and am dabbling in cycling, now. I just took my first cycling class last night and can barely sit down today. You know – in the crotch area. Wow.

But I LOVED cycling! I had no idea. Riding a bike up pretend hills while listening to rap music as someone yells at you to “BREAK AWAY FROM THE PACK!! You’ll come in last if you don’t KICK IT!” through a microphone? What’s not to love?

So, here’s what a typical week looks like for me now – of course, meetings and happy hours occasionally drop in there on the evenings, but if I had NO obligations, this is how I’d roll.

Monday
6:00 a.m. – swim a mile downtown (indoors, friends)
5:30 p.m. – yoga with Debbie downtown. She rocks!

Tuesday
6:00 a.m. – Circuit Blast (in East Nash.) with Nikole, my Hungarian beauty. This is 50% of why I joined the Y. (No, not to meet hot girls). My friends are in this class and (rightly so) talk about Nikole non-stop. She seriously is amazing. She’s so encouraging, puts so much thought into planning workouts for us and pushes us till we about die every time. YES! We fondly call it “hell class.” The folks in our class recently raised over $2,000 to send her and her daughter back to Hungary for a visit since she pines for it regularly and hasn’t been in many, many years – so that should tell you what an impact she has on her classes.

Evening – rest

Wednesday
6:00 a.m. – swim a mile or run 2-3 miles, depending on how I feel
5:30 p.m. – cycling downtown

Thursday
6:00 a.m. – Circuit Blast with Nikole again
5:30 p.m. – rest or yoga downtown (am trying this class tonight for the first time). How well I like the instructor totally makes or breaks yoga for me.

Friday
5:30 a.m. – Pancake Run! 3 miles.
6:00 p.m. – Yoga with Gina in Green Hills (Nashville peeps. Have you been to Gina’s class yet? Lawd. She about killed me. It is hardcore, but awesome. Come with me if you’re here!)

Saturday
REST! Eat and drink. It is football season, after all.

Although…there is a spin class at 8:45 a.m. that I’m checking out this Saturday. 🙂 I’m addicted.

Sunday
4:30 p.m. – power yoga with Ed. Again – quite the challenging class.

Start it all over again.

So, you’re probably wondering how in-shape I am and how much weight I’ve lost after doing this routine for a little over a month, now? Well, first thing first….I’ve GAINED a couple pounds. UGH! Dang it. It sucks being a woman. I workout like crazy and eat mostly healthy and I GAIN weight because my body is all like “OH NO! Reserve the fat! What if we want to have babies one day?! Must.hold.onto.fat.” DUMB.

In other news though, I know some of the weight gain is from muscle strength. I have lost inches, I can tell, and am much stronger than I was when I first started Nikole’s class, for example. So, I’m not too mad about the scale. So long as my pants continue fitting and I don’t bust out of them like the Incredible Hulk when I walk, I won’t worry about it.

I don’t have a recent picture of me in a sports bra to show you my workout bod progress — but this one looks pretty much just like me, so it’ll work.

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Ha.

Are any of you members at the Y and have a class that you just love? Tell me! As you can see, I like to try new things. 🙂

XOXO,
Jenn

Some People “Tri,” Wades just Do

Have I mentioned how amazing my athletic family is? I have? Oh, well — hear it again.

My Dad and my brother completed their one millionth (I’ve lost count) Sprint Triathlon on Saturday and each got first in their age group. So cool! They are so amazing.

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You can read their race reports here (Dad) and here (Josh).

More soon on my weekend. I did a little exercising myself — and it involved squeezing into the only one piece bathing suit I have, which is an old lifeguard suit from college. Don’t get too excited — there are no photos. But now I know how a sausage feels.

XOXO,
Jenn

Another Wade Enters the Blogging World

I’ve blogged before about my darlin’ Daddy who blogs about flyfishing and woodworking – just two of his favorite hobbies that he’s quite good at.

And I’ve blogged about my beautiful sister-in-law who is an amazing photographer and lover of my brother and their fur babies.

But now, something I never anticipated seeing has happened – Josh Wade, my little (well, not little, but younger) brother has entered the blogging world. I could tell you all about how my brother has turned into an elite athlete over the past two years, but he says it best on his “about me” page.

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Josh Wade may be my little brother (and he even says my first half marathon inspired him to start running), but I have and always will be the one who looks up to him. He inspires me, and all of us, every day.

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I am just in awe of his dedication to his body and spirit through his new-found love of training. Just this weekend I was in Kingston to watch him do a tri-sprint, and I was just wandering around the park because I wasn’t expecting him for another several minutes. I thought I had time to make it to the finish line where my Mom and sis-in-law were waiting. All of the sudden I hear “Hey J Wade!” from the race course. I looked over and there the little devil was. Running sub-7 minute miles, he’d snuck up on me and was finishing quicker than I anticipated.

He said, “Let’s go for a little run.” I did some sort of wild horse trot and fell into step with him and ran the last couple hundred yards or so with him. I said, “so this is what a 7 minute mile feels like in a Victoria’s Secret bra and jean skirt.” He said, “6 minute mile, actually.” Ha. He’s nothing if not confident.

Anyways – go show him some love over at “Tri and Keep Up.” I’m pretty proud to call him mine.

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XOXO,
Jenn

Training Gets Personal — with Kathy Mead

Recently an email hit my inbox from Kathy Mead who lives here in Nashville and is venturing into the world of personal training after almost 15 years of being a group exercise instructor. Kathy and I have mutual friends (the Pancake Girls that I run with every Friday morning), but haven’t ever met. This was perfect — because Kathy wanted to hone her personal training style with a few guinea pig clients that she knew nothing about.

I love being a guinea pig!

First, Kathy and I had a phone conversation about my workout history, likes and dislikes. We talked about running, my injuries (stupid ol’ knee), my recent love for boot camp and BarreAmped classes, etc. She asked me what my goals would be if I were to work with a personal trainer on the regular, and I told her that I’d love to just continue to tone up — lengthen and strengthen, people. So that’s what we worked on.

Soon after, Kathy and I scheduled two personal training sessions. Again, her goal was to practice working with brand new clients and putting together fun, effective, hour-long personal training sessions that aligned with the individual’s goals and fitness level. She also wanted to get familiar wtih her new studio location and all it has to offer.

I met her bright and early at 6 a.m. at the studio she’ll be working out of — which was amazeballs. It’s so convenient to me, and anyone in the downtown area. It’s in Hillsboro Village on Wedgewood Ave. in one of those beautiful old houses that you always wish your office would relocate to. 🙂

The entire upstairs, with a separate entrance in the back, are small fitness studios outfitted with tons of equipment for whatever your exercising heart desires. It’s called The Studio of Muscle Integration, run by Kandice King. Go to the website and read about Kandice too — she kicks major butt.

My hour-long session with Kathy went something like this. 5 minute warm up on the treadmill to get the blood pumping. Then, three sets of a circuit that involved two strength exercises and one cardio exercise. We used the exercise ball, exercise bands, TRX, dumbbells, kettlebells and more. I’m telling you, they have a little bit of everything to keep it interesting. After working hard for 50 minutes or so, we cooled down and stretched. And I was a puddle on the floor.

So, for example, we’d do a set of wall squats using the exercise ball, some tricep and oblique (I’m so workout term savvy, as you can see) exercise using a band, and then a set of burpees for cardio. Then we’d repeat that at least one more time. Then she’d introduce another “circuit” of three new things. It was awesome and I was pouring sweat.

OMG the TRX. Do you all know what this thing is? I’d never used one, but had seen it. Here’s an example of a push up using TRX. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b4fUS7yITAw. I fully expected for an elbow to give out and for me to get tangled up so badly that I’d have to be cut out of it with scissors, but it was great. Total body workout because you’re balancing and engaging your core the whole time. Don’t think me weird if I install one of these at the Flat, soon. 🙂 Here’s another one we did — TRX Side Plank. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ezC5UNcyyg&feature=results_video&playnext=1&list=PL4D2D34FEAE5E9A05

I’ll have to be honest — personal training has always seemed intimidating to me. I’ve never done it before, but the thought of someone staring at me and only me while I workout is daunting. But not so with Kathy — she is so likeable, personable and makes you feel comfortable right from the beginning. We chatted (as much as I could while gasping for breath) about random stuff like books, exercise, travel, cocktails! and such. It was like working out with a friend — if that friend just watched you sweat and told you what do to next.

It was SO nice to have someone who knows what they’re doing to be sure your form is right and to be sure that you aren’t about to blow a knee out because you can’t properly do a lunge. That was so cool — because that’s how so many inuries happen. Kathy was great at adjusting the workout up or down as I needed.

Perfect example: on the day of our second session I had run out of peanut butter. (Huh? Yes.) If I workout in the morning I eat one spoonful of peanut butter and that’s enough to give me some protein so I don’t pass out, yet it’s light enough so I don’t puke it up. I know, lovely.

I didn’t have any PB the morning of our second session, so I crammed some dried fruit bites in my mouth and headed out the door. About halfway through our workout I was doing a simple strength exercise and was watching myself in the mirror and saw all the color drain from my face. Then I thought I was going to barf. Then I thought I was going to…well, nevermind. I had to stop, lay down, started POURING sweat and my ears were ringing. I went in the bathroom to splash water on my face and to consider what it would be like if Kathy had to break the door down to pull my face out of the toilet after I fell into it. Finally, I settled down. It was terrible.

I was so embarrassed and felt so wimpy! Kathy was totally cool of course and was like “let’s stretch.” So we did about 20 minutes of really good stretching to finish the workout. Poor Kathy.

If you are interested in personal training in Nashville, give Kathy a call, please. She is so kick ass and you will love her for kicking yours.

Bio and Contact Information for Kathy Mead:
Kathy Mead has a B.S. from Vanderbilt University in Human and Organizational Development and Psychology and a M.S. from MTSU in Exercise Science. She has been a certified group exercise instructor for almost 15 years and interned with MTSU’s strength and conditioning department as a graduate student.
 
She’s worked as an Exercise Coach since 2004 (also certified by the American College of Sports Medicine as a Health and Fitness Specialist since 2004) and is a VERY amateur bike racer.
 
She is absolutely committed to exercise and fitness as a way of life and has worked with a myriad of populations including: pre/post-natal, bariatric surgery patients pre and post-op, post-physical therapy patients, athletes, and just the everyday “Joe” or “Sue” who is interested in improving fitness or losing weight and unsure how to amp up their workout routine or start a routine all together.

Contact her at either 615-330-7308 or at meadkm1028@yahoo.com for more information.