Category Archives: Fitness

Be Well Practiced.

It’s Called A Practice For A Reason…


Have you been thinking of trying out yoga? Are you thinking you’re not flexible or agile enough to partake? Well, not all of those super bendy yogis were just born that way! Time and time again on their yoga mat helped pave the path to where they are today. It’s called a yoga practice for a reason. And there is no “perfect” practice. It’s a journey, an experience and with time, it will unfold. With time, your yoga practice will not only help you gain more flexibility and more strength but a sense of inner peace and a better sense of yourself. Whether you’re a runner, a boot camper, a full on athlete or just needing something to feel more whole in your life, yoga is for you. Don’t judge it until you try it…in fact, leave that judgment behind because there is no judgement in yoga. Come on over to A Healthy Balance and practice with us on Sunday mornings from 9-10am with an open mind and a light heart. You might just see a new side to things!

Be Healthy. Be Balanced.


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Be an AHB Rockstar: Kathleen Week 1

Kathleen has apparently survived week 1 because she sent me a write up! The outpouring of support after her initial post was inspiring and we can’t wait to see what the next few weeks bring.  

When I first agreed to do this, it seemed easy enough: train hard, eat well, write about it. But here I am, trying to document my first week and I realize this may be a little harder than I thought. It’s not like I am learning all of these concepts for the first time. I’ve done this, and pretty well if I do say so myself.

So in thinking about what’s brought me to this point, I came to this conclusion: This “thing” – working out, eating well, my “healthy balance”- it’s a full time committed relationship. (This would be the point where I apologize to my fiancee, but luckily I have a fantastic guy who’s openly accepted that there’s “someone else”). In the beginning, my healthy balance and I were pretty hot and heavy – we bonded over logging meals, it soothed me when I woke up unable to move the morning after a workout, and we celebrated together: 1 pound, 5 pounds, 25, 30. As with many relationships, we seemed perfect together.

But, as many relationships can witness, lately things have gotten…stale. Sometimes logging every single thing I eat seems absolutely tedious and annoying. After a night out that involves a few too many drinks and an unknown amount of snacking, we get into a hazy, late night fight- which we try to mend in the morning with a run. The pounds that we used to cheer about together disappear slower now.
This first week has been the start of a rekindling for my healthy balance and I. With the help of Maisie, one of the dietitians, we began to tackle the first part of our relationship. After giving her the rundown of my history, I told her that basically I’m bored. I am a Catch 22 when it comes to food: I hate trying new things, yet I get sick of repetitive foods at an obnoxious rate. You can only get excited about an English Muffin with 2 tablespoons of peanut butter for so long. One meal at a time, we’re going to put some pizzazz back into eating. This week: breakfast. Part of my problem seems to be that sometimes I’m not eating enough in the morning which can have a snowball effect on the rest of my day. Maisie suggested switching hings up with oatmeal with nuts and fruit (genius, I know). The first morning I excitedly put together my oatmeal with diced apples and walnuts. Unfortunately, I didn’t add enough water and it ended up becoming a ball  of paste. THe second morning I tried honey and almonds. This time I put in too MUCH water and had a water logged mess.

PS – This is totally Alicia’s oatmeal fail, not Kathleen’s, but we thought it was fitting to include. Oatmeal can get the best of everyone 🙂

So much for eating a better breakfast. I ended up throwing most of it away. I guess this will take some time. I can only imagine what working on dinner will be like, when we try to move out of my comfort zone of chicken, chicken…and more chicken.
As far as the workouts go, it seemed to me for the most part that my healthy balance and I always saw eye to eye. We do burpees in the pouring rain, we often get up to run before the sun rises, and we faithfully make it to several bootcamps a week. But I’m now realizing that lately it’s been a lot of just going through the motions. While I love bootcamp, this new addition of one to one personal training is the breath of fresh air that my healthy balance and I needed. The last time that it was just me and Alicia, and some free weights, I was forty pounds heavier and dying after 15 seconds of an exercise. I’m excited to see what my body can do now, and as much as I roll my eyes and complain I know that Alicia is pushing me to do what she knows I’m capable of. When I started to get the familiar heavy feeling in my arms the afternoon after my session, I smiled to myself and thought “I’m back.” My healthy balance and I are ready to jump start this relationship.

I’ve decided to keep a chart of “successes.” While they might not be typical forms of measurement, they are things that I struggle with and hope to see some serious improvements in by the end of this adventure:
# of sarcastic eye rolls towards Alicia: 15-20? (I think that’s already an improvement!)
# of days I logged my meals: 3
# of times I ate chicken: 5? I need a chicken intervention.
# of “real” pushups: Zero. Sadface.

Be Healthy. Be Balanced.


Filed under AHB Rockstars, Fitness, Nutrition, Wellness

Be Rewarded (with $$)!

Have you ever paid for a gym membership and not used it? Wouldn’t it be easier to get to the gym consistently if you got paid to do it? As a personal trainer, I kind of get paid to go to the gym, but even then that sometimes isn’t enough motivation. Let me introduce you to GymPact.


GymPact is an iPhone app that rewards you with real, actual money for going to the gym as many times as you say you are. Don’t worry Droid users, they’re in the process of developing a Droid app too.

How it works: At the beginning of each week you select how many times you are going to commit to going to the gym that week. If you don’t change your commitment or Pact, the same pact from the previous week rolls over. Then you wager how much you are willing to pay if you miss a gym session (the minimum is $5). Each time you go the gym you check in and must stay for at least 30 minutes for the workout to count. At the end of each week, every GymPacter who didn’t get to the gym as frequently as they said they were pay the amount they wagered into a pot and then the pot is divided amongst those Pacters who went to the gym with the frequency they committed. They also just released an update that has a Runkeeper integration so you get credit for outdoor activities that are at least 30 minutes in length and .5 miles.



Seriously this app is awesome. And it gives you real, honest to goodness money, not gift cards or points or rupees from Zelda. Thanks for the $60 GymPact! Now go download the free app and start earning some moolah

Leave a comment: How do you stay motivated to hit the gym?

Be Healthy. Be Balanced.


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Be Inspired.

I wish I was lying when I admitted I have been staying up WAY too late watching the Olympics. Keep in mind my usual “way too late” is often 8:30 pm, but that’s besides the point 🙂  So back to the point, the Olympics have been sucking me in on a nightly basis. It doesn’t matter if it is gymnastics, skeet shooting, water polo, or swimming, I can’t turn off the TV. There is something about watching these athletes who have dedicated their entire lives to competing at the highest level. They have sacrificed more than I can probably imagine and are now honored with the opportunity to represent their country on an international stage. I was talking with a friend the other day about how use of gyms, apps like MapMyRun, etc probably increase around the Olympics. It is hard to justify sitting on the couch or making up another lame excuse for skipping a workout when these athletes (most of them teenagers and young adults) have dedicated so much to become their best. Granted, the majority of us will likely never make an Olympic team, but I can always push myself to become my best. So I challenge you to think about what you can do to become your best.

Here are some ways to channel your inner Olympian:

-Sign up for a local road race or sprint triathlon. Check out for local races.
-Rediscover an old passion. See if your city or town offers adult recreation leagues for your former sport of choice, dust off your bike or pull out your swimming goggles and cap.
-Try a challenging new workout routine.

Leave a comment: How have the Olympics inspired you?

Be Healthy. Be Balanced.

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Be Sweaty.

Several clients have been asking over the past few weeks about exercising in the heat. I’m going to say it has something to do with the lovely New England heat we’ve been having.  There are definitely a few considerations to keep in mind when it comes to exercising in the heat. 

  • Stay hydrated! And this doesn’t just mean drink water while you are exercising. In order to best stay on top of your hydration in the heat, you should be sipping on water all day long. For more tips on hydration see here, here and here.
  • Wear light and breathable clothing. Think wicking shirts and light colors.
  • Exercise early or late and avoid direct sunlight if possible.
  • Monitor how you are feeling. If you start to feel unusually weak, muscle cramps, nauseous or dizzy, stop immediately. Also monitor how much you are sweating as this is your body’s way of cooling itself down so if you stop sweating, your body is likely dehydrated and unable to cool itself.
  • Monitor heat, as well as humidity.
  • Pace yourself! If it is 100 degrees you are not likely going to be able to run the same pace or bust out as many burpees as you would during a 70 degree bootcamp so don’t push it.
  • Use common sense. Don’t try something brand new or try to keep up with faster or more fit friends. And don’t be afraid to stop if you need to!
Nicer weather provides a great opportunity to switch up your workouts and take it outside, but it also poses potential health risks. Keep these tips in mind next time you brave the heat!

Be Healthy. Be Balanced.

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Be an AHB Rockstar: Adri’s Journey Week 7

Sorry this post is a bit late (hey, it happens!) – so without further ado, checking in with Adri on week 7 of her journey. Check in on Friday for her two month update and measurements!

I feel great. Liberated, even. And guess what – I’m bloated and my pants feel tight, I had no weight loss last week and I ate a bunch of bread and cheese two nights ago.

But I’ve never felt okay with that. And on this journey with Alicia, Nikki and Meg, I’ve finally gotten to the point, in all my 28 years, that I can bounce back after life happens.

I got to this point because I had a week that didn’t adhere to my goals for fitness and nutrition. And for the first time EVER, the following week I forgave myself and got right back on the health horse.

And that’s how my life is – I’ll have good weeks and bad weeks. I’ll have great self control most of the time, but sometimes, yeah, I’ll have a slice of pizza with my friends.

But now I’ll choose vodka seltzers if I’m out for cocktails. I’ll get a salad with black beans and avocado and lots of veggies if I’m out for Mexican. I’ll wake up early to make sure to get my cardio in because I know it makes me feel awesome.

I’m making healthier choices for the long haul, is my point. My quest for fitness has always been spurts of short term goals that I do, actually, reach – but can never maintain. And then I’ll repeat the cycle…over, and over, and over again. For years.

Even though it will probably be more impressive, there’ll be no more rush to lose 15-20 lbs in 3 months. It will happen on its own while I’m making these healthy choices, whether I’m weighing myself obsessively or not.


Here’s my new goal: work out hard and consistently 3-5 times a week. Make healthy food choices intuitively and mindfully that keep me around 1,800 calories a day without having to obsessively count.

So, hello. I’m Adri. I take good care of myself. I work out several times a week, I eat really healthy and sometimes splurge, I’m okay with being curvy no matter how much I weigh, and I’m always a work in progress. I like it that way.

Leave a comment: Do you find yourself obsessively counting calories or checking the number on the scale? What do you do to shift your mindset?

Be Healthy. Be Balanced.

A Healthy Balance
14B Alleyne St
Quincy, MA 

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Be an AHB Rockstar: Adri’s Journey Week 6

Who's got two thumbs and didn't even touch one slice of pizza? THIS GUY!

Adri’s adventure continues… week 6!

When you’re a goal-oriented person who thrives on routine, it’s hard when life – well – is just being life. Things change. No days are ever the same, and you can’t predict how a day will turn out. And as someone who’s pretty impulsive and fun-loving, I can have self-control…but not all the time.

So when a friend came in from out of town, I took her to the best spot I knew – and we tasted everything we wanted to, within some limits. And when I woke up with a stomachache the next day, which lasted for almost five days, that sucked big time. It messed up my workouts, my eating patterns (I could only eat Saltines for dinner one night), and made me feel even more insecure about an upcoming photo-shoot for a local magazine that is now happening *gulp* TONIGHT (Wednesday).

I feel like I’m making better choices, but not perfect choices. But I have to learn to be okay with that progress. Because, I know from my past, that this all-or-nothing attitude isn’t maintainable for me.

Food. Meh. I went out to eat quite a bit last week, either for work or play (see: friends coming in from out of town), but it’s hard to really measure your caloric intake when you’re grubbing gourmet. All those sauces, additives (and whatever else makes it all delicious) becomes overwhelming to track, even if you’re choosing a healthier menu item. A night out for dinner can really upset my routine with food, where I’m used to cooking and prepping simple, whole food meals from home. This week, my goal is to find better ways to order when I’m out, and not be tempted by any super-fancy dishes.

On a brighter note, last night I most literally had a stack of delicious Bertucci’s pizzas and rolls in my face, and I didn’t touch it. Hooray for me! Pizza is my crack.

Workouts. Often, but not to capacity. This was because of my stupid stomach issues – last Friday’s session with Alicia was an absolute laugh, and in a bad way. I could hardly do any of the exercises, and the whining I did this time around was legit, and not just to be funny. Because of the impending photoshoot, I needed to go to the gym or I would have felt like total crap – so I did light, steady-state cardio for as long as I could before I felt like puking.

I’m finally feeling better today, though, and Alicia really kicked up today’s workout, which makes me feel pretty awesome. It means I’m almost back at the point of fitness I was before my knee got all busted. I’m doing burpees again!

Wellness. This week’s sesh with Meg, (which, by the way, I cannot stress enough that everyone needs) got a LOT heavier than expected. Who knew that food and body image negativity could stem from such deep-rooted issues? I’m identifying why I have such poor body image, why I’m so self-critical, why I make myself utterly insane with all the worrying and nitpicking…and how to loosen up on my control issues. Tracking calories and weight is productive for me, but only to a point, because I become obsessive. I tend to be able to only focus on this project, and neglect other important aspects of my life. Again with the all-or-nothing attitude…and I need to chill out a bit.

A somewhat tumultuous week, to say the least, but this one’s looking better. I’m going to forgive myself for not being perfect – and scratch that from being any sort of goal at all.


Leave a comment: What helps you get back on track with a routine when “life” threatens to derail you?


Be Healthy. Be Balanced.

A Healthy Balance
14B Alleyne St
Quincy, MA


Filed under AHB Rockstars, Fitness, Nutrition