New Year, New Goals?

Are you a New Year’s “Resolutionist?”

If so, this isn’t a post to discourage you! Eleven years ago, right before the holidays, I made a promise to myself that I would lose weight and become a healthy role model for my children. And, a few short weeks before New Year’s, I started to log my food intake and attend regular fitness classes. Why did I do this during the craziest time of the year? I did this because I knew that if I could survive those days with portion control, I could survive anything!

Those first few weeks were arduous. I wanted to break the pact I had made with myself often, especially in the evenings. And, just when I began to think that I couldn’t do it anymore, I saw the scale finally start to move. Eventually, after six months of careful monitoring and regular exercise, I was down 45 pounds and well within my healthy weight range. I felt amazing and so very proud of myself. In fact, this was when I decided to become a Certified Personal Trainer and help other people get healthy.

If you, like me, want to be successful on your New Year’s resolution, here are some tips:

1.  Set a true goal, not just a wish! Set your intentions with a date and a specific target, with attainable/reasonable steps. For example, you will be much more likely to lose weight if you set a goal to “lose X pounds by this date.” Wanting weight loss without a specific ‘end date’ or plan of action is only a wish.

2. Find a supportive friend/family member to encourage your changing lifestyle. Sometimes, those we love are not always supportive when we want to change. In fact, sometimes they can be a source of sabotage. If you find this is the case, ensure that you have a friend or a support group (that you can contact often) to keep encouraging you on those tough days.

3. A bad day is not the end!!! If you overindulge during one meal, start fresh with the next. Don’t give up a goal because you have one bad day.  (Yes, I had bad days, too…)

4. Commit to fitness! A moving body is a healthy body. If you commit to eating well and staying active, you are much more likely to meet and/or exceed your goals.

5.  Find healthy convenience foods.  Convenience foods have a bad reputation, but they don’t have to be unhealthy. Buy healthy prepared foods at grocery stores and restaurants. Save time and stay on track!

Happy New Year!




Jazzercise: 50 Years and going strong!

I’ve been a certified Jazzercise instructor for over two years now. After two years of leading an average of 4-5 classes a week, I can easily say that I am now in better shape than I was even five years ago. 

When I was first approached and asked if I would consider becoming an instructor, I was immediately intimidated and gave a quick “No Way!” Why was I so afraid? As a Jazzercise instructor, we get on a stage and wear a mic for an hour-long class. To prepare for each week’s classes, I need to organize and learn/review routines. It takes creativity and courage to be able to stand up, cue movements and motivate customers from the stage. I’m actually pretty introverted and was very nervous to get up and talk to a group of people. However, I can say without a doubt that this experience has made me a better trainer and a more confident woman. I absolutely love this job.

Jazzercise corporate is celebrating quite a milestone this year. For many businesses, 50 years is a success, but not remarkable. In contrast, the fitness/wellness industry is fast paced and trend focused. People want results in days or weeks and will quickly jump from one fad to another. To stay competitive in a maze of boutique fitness options over several decades is phenomenal. In fact, it just doesn’t happen. Adding that this is a woman-owned and operated biz and you can see why we have reason to celebrate.

We are not just another dance program. Jazzercise employs exercise physiologists and marketing experts to analyze and successfully position itself year after year. I have tried just about every group fitness offering in the past: Crossfit, Spin Cycling, Orange Theory, Zumba, HIIT, Cardio Kickboxing, and Barre, but I always find that Jazzercise is the most fun and varied fitness program out there. It combines all of these different modes of exercise and puts them into one total body workout. It’s not just challenging, though, it’s a ton of fun. I love the strength intervals and the dance moves. I love the community of healthy women we bring together.

I’m very excited to be heading to San Diego this week for the 50th Anniversary Celebration with a couple of other instructors. I want to get sweaty and feel inspired to continue the workout that changed everything for me. I was a Jazzerciser before I was a trainer. Now, I’m both.

Congratulations, Jazzercise!!!


Party on a plate

Despite the daily weekday chaos of family life, I love to take time for myself by preparing quick, fresh and healthy meals out of what I have in my fridge. Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day. And, I now try to take a bit of extra care to prepare my own “party on a plate” several mornings a week. My neighbor often shares her free range, organic eggs with us. I love to creatively use them for a variety of meals.

Sometimes, I simply baste the eggs and indulge dipping a bit of whole grain toast with avocado into the yolks. Other times, I use hard boiled eggs as a protein for a breakfast salad with fresh veggies on a bed of kale or spinach. On special days, I love to create a “bread-free BLT” with eggs, uncured bacon, basil, tomatoes, and fresh mozzarella. These colorful meals feel indulgent, but they take very little time to prepare.

Do you ever take a bit of “me time” to make a special meal for yourself? I highly recommend that you try it!



Heathy Summer Fun

Recently, my kids have finished up their school year and we are beginning the Summer schedule…that is, the non-schedule-schedule. Mornings are relaxed. Dishes pile up in the sink. And, I putter around the yard trying to keep plants alive. Meals are a free-for-all until dinner. I do like the change of pace, but it is challenging to keep my kids active and encourage them to make healthy food choices.

As my boys grow up and become teens, I still like to remain a healthy influence on their lives. I try to provide endless amounts of fresh fruit and healthy snacks in the house. I also keep signing them up for camps to keep them occupied and engaged throughout the Summer. However, this is challenging because they have more opinions now than they used to. They also need to eat more because they are growing at such a fast pace. I often need to make extra trips to the store to keep up because they tend to eat everything in our house!

I welcome any ideas to keep these kids healthy and happy during the Summer. Please feel free to comment or share ideas. Thanks!