I am 30

Today is my 30th birthday.

I am thirty.

I am no longer in my twenties.

I am thirty, and it feels good to longer be in my twenties.

I am thirty, and I am wiser.

I am thirty, and I am stronger.

I am thirty, and I am patient.

I am thirty and I am not, as, lost. Only a little. I like some mystery.

I am thirty, and I have a college degree.

I am thirty, and I have an amazing family.

I am thirty, and I am married to the love of my life. 

I am thirty, and I own a home.

I am thirty, and I have experienced more happiness than heartache. But I’ve had my fair share.

I am thirty, and I understand that the strength is in the struggle.

I am thirty, and want to tell my twenty year old self  “This too shall pass”

I am thirty, and want to thank myself for trusting the path that I have chosen.

I am thirty, and I know that my job is to LOVE and BE LOVED, to LEARN and to TEACH.

I am thirty, and I LOVE my job.

I am thirty, and need no one else’s approval  except my own.

I am thirty, and I am proud of who I have become.

I am thirty.

I am thirty, and it’s not as hard to say as I thought it would be.

I am thirty. I am me.

Here’s to the next 10!

Camping Indulgences and Nutrient Dense Snacks

One of my favorite end of the Summer activities is going to Country Fest with my husband and a group of our friends.

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We pack up our camper, stock it with food and drinks, and spend the weekend at Normandy Farms Camping Resort, which is a short ride away from Gillette Stadium. It is the perfect ending to the Summer, and this year it, falls right on my 30th birthday!

I am so excited!

When it comes to packing food for this trip, or any weekend trip, there is always the usual snacks; chips and salsa, soppressata and cheese, ingredients for s’mores, along with meats, sweet potatoes, corn on the cobb and vegetables for the grille.

Oh..and plenty of wine, champagne,beer and my blueberry vodka.

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If you have not tried my Blueberry Lemonade cocktail, here it is again

1.5 ounces Smirnoff Blueberry Vodka
5 ounces Blueberry Lemonade Polar Seltzer
Small handful of frozen blueberries

You’re welcome.

Anyways…I always make sure to bring a variety of better choice options as well. Not just for me, but for EVERYONE. If it’s there, they will eat it, and I am all about helping keep the balance.

Here are some of my go-to’s when packing for a weekend getaway. Some I make myself, while others I purchase pre-made for convenience.

Vegetable Platters and Fruit Bowls: high in water content, low in calories. The fiber will help fill you up, while giving your body the nutrients that it needs.

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Nut Butters and Mixed Nuts: when you crave something savory. Nuts contain a lot of nutrients in a small amount, so stick to about 1/4 cup nuts or 1-2 tbsp Nut Butter.

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Fresh Salsa,Guacamole and Hummus: limiting any creamy dips such as ranch, french onion, and vegetable. Fresh is always better.

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Rice Cakes and/or Suzie’s Thin cakesI buy plain unsalted because I add hummus or almond butter on top.

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BOOMCHICKAPOPwhen you want to pick on chips, serving size is 3 cups!

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Seltzer, Coconut, and Regular Water: Stay Hydrated!

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barkTHINSkeep these in the fridge or freezer for a perfect chocolate snack. (or add into your s’more? just sayin’)

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I also bring enough ingredients to make a dinner salad for everyone, using a large bag of mixed greens, a bag of baby bell peppers, shredded carrots, grape tomatoes and a cucumber. 

Without going crazy, there are plenty of options to choose from, and having a balance of both indulgent and nutrient dense food is key. You do not have to feel left out. It is not about deprivation. Eat as you normally would, giving your body proper fuel to use throughout the day, something that s’mores and chips simply cannot do. 

Stay motivated. Stay FIT. xoxo

What are some of your favorite camping, beach trip, and weekend getaway snacks to bring with you on the go? 

Becoming an Early Bird, not a Night Owl

I love to be up with the rising sun.

There is just something about sitting in silence before the rest of the world, well, outside of your window, awakens.

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Something that I always hear from clients is “I wish I was a morning person, but I just love sleep too much.”  And trust me, I GET IT! I love to sleep too! But overtime I have found that the early bird has more benefits than the night owl.

Early bird gets the worm…and the night owl gets the midnight munchies.

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It took some getting used to, but I am now a full-fledged morning person who enjoys teaching a 5:30am spin class and getting a head start on my day. All it takes is a few  tricks, and you will be up and at em in no time!

Let the light In.

Crack those blinds and open your blackout shades. We are naturally very sensitive to light and temperature, so when we sense that the sun has risen, our body feels the need to wake up also. By using black out shades and tricking your body into thinking it’s still nighttime, can actually disrupt to your natural sleep cycle even more.

Put your alarm out of reach.

Most of us use our phone as an alarm, which is constantly attached to our hand. And I don’t know about you, but having my phone so close by leaves me feeling like I am constanty sleeping with one eye open. 

Set your alarm on a tall bureau or table away from your bed. This enables you to roll over, shut it, and go back to sleep. Once you are up, stay up. What is the point of waking every 10 minutes to repeatedly hit the snooze button? Take a moment to let your body stretch and welcome the new day.

Hydrate!

It’s been several hours without water and your body is feeling it! Upon waking, bring your body to life by drinking at least 16 ounces of water. I like to start my day with 1 cup of water, and another cup of warm water with lemon. Do this BEFORE you have any coffee or tea.

I often infuse water in my fridge the night before, so in the morning I have a refreshing flavored water than doesn’t bore my taste buds.

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Create your own morning ritual

Make your morning something that you look forward to. Instead of rushing around because you overslept, take your time to enjoy breakfast, get in a workout, walk your dog, or even get a load of laundry done and answer emails. This frees up time later in the day to spend with family, and also allows for a decent bedtime.

Keep Going! Keep it up

Once you get into the habit of waking up early, do not fall back into old habits. Of course over the weekend you can give yourself some leeway, but try not to veer too far off course. If you end up sleeping until midday, it will be that much harder to get back on schedule come Monday. Dedicate yourself to a morning workout on Saturday, or make plans to meet a friend for a coffee walk by 9am. 

Of course, this get’s a little tricky come the winter months, which is why it is important to get started now. Remember that if you are waking up earlier, you should also go to bed earlier too. This should become natural, as the body will be ready for bed as needed. 

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For those who follow me on Periscope (@jennfit17), I had talked previously about starting your day on the right foot, both mentally and physically. 

You wouldn’t leave your house without a clean body, so why start your day with hectic energy? Take time to mentally prepare yourself for the day at hand. Sit in silence, exhale any negativity, and step outside with a clear head. Dust that chip off of shoulder.

I hope these tips help!

Do you have any more tips for becoming a morning person?

Stay motivated. Stay FIT! xo

Post Workout Nutrition.

Your post workout meal is important.

You have just left your favorite class, your muscles are tired, your stomach is growling, and all you want to do is grab the first item that you see when you open your fridge.

BUT WAIT!

Whatever exercise you’re doing, you want to make sure to refuel with foods that aid in both muscle repair and replenishing glycogen stores; your muscles’ main source of energy. When you workout, glycogen stores become depleted, so it is key is to fuel up with high-quality protein and carbohydrates that the body will convert to energy quickly.

Here are some of my favorite post workout meals, which should be eaten within 30 minutes post exercise. 

Endurance Workouts (long distance running or cycling): mix of complex carbs, simple carbs, and healthy fats. This combination will help regulate blood sugar and stop any oxidative stress caused by high demands on the body

  • Almonds Butter and sliced strawberries on Ezekiel Bread
  • Sliced avocado and tomato on an Ezekiel english muffin
  • Plain oatmeal with blueberries and almond butter
  • Sweet potato with pure maple syrup and slivered almonds
  • Quinoa or brown rice with black beans, avocado, tomato and green vegetables.

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Cardio Classes (Aerobics, Zumba, Kickboxing etc): Fructose helps aid in restoring glycogen, while healthy fats halt oxidative stress.

  • Apples with nut butter
  • Mixed berries with walnuts
  • Cinnamon Raisin Ezekiel bread with homemade strawberry jam (microwave berries until soft, and then spread onto toast)

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Resistance Workouts (BODYPUMP, Barre, Pilates, etc):  Protein and natural sugar is the way to go.

  • Spinach and tomato egg white omelet, or scrambled, with a side of berries.
  • Shredded chicken breast on bed of kale with balsamic vinegar, cucumbers, and sliced grapes or granny smith apple.
  • Plain Oatmeal with pure maple syrup and berries, side of egg whites
  • Protein Shake made with 1 scoop protein of choice, 1 small or half large frozen banana, and enough water to make everything move.

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Hot Yoga: Protein and Electrolytes 

  • Protein Shake made with 1 scoop protein of choice, handful of sliced frozen bananas, 1 cup unsweetened almond milk, dash of sea salt.
  • Coconut water or Maple water with a handful of sea salted almonds
  • Green Juice made with kale, cucumber, celery, lemon and ginger.

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Always come prepared. Bring your post workout snack or meal with you to eat on the go, and refuel those hard working muscles to achieve your best results!

Stay motived. Stay FIT! xoxo

What are some of your favorite post workout meals and snacks!?

Les Mills On Demand

Home workouts are a lifesaver, especially for new moms, people with crazy schedules, or for those who cannot afford monthly gym memberships/per class rates at boutique studios. 

When I first started working out at a gym, one of my FAVORITE classes to attend was Les Mills BODYCOMBAT. I thought I was badass fighting against the air, and there was something about the music, intensity and choreography that hooked me in. 

I then took a BODYPUMP class, and my love for this program only grew stronger, along with my stamina, motivation, and strength.

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Not all gyms offer Les Mills classes, which is why I am super excited that I can take a class right in my living room with Les Mills On Demand!

For $12.99 a month, with your first 10 days FREE, you have everything from BODYPUMP to GRIT right at your fingertips. All classes are taught by master trainers that stick to the choreography and are sure to have your dripping sweat all over your floor. Safety and form are top priority, which is great for those who need a refresh when it comes to weight lifting and plyometric movements.

Each workout has a link which provides you with a description and duration of the routine, along with the equipment you need and a full track list. This allows you to go back and download any songs that you liked at the end.

Some routines do require additional equipment, such as BODYPUMP and CXWORX, so you want to make sure to have at least a set of dumbbells and resistance bands. Both can be found at affordable prices at Marshall’s, TJ MAXX and Target.

Overall, I love this option as an at home workout. The price is affordable, workouts are legit, and if you decide within the 10 day trial that it is not for you, cancellation is simple and free. 

Give it a try and let me know what you think!

Stay motivated. Stay positive. Stay FIT. xoxo