Meet Meagan: A Coaching Story

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Meet Meagan!!!
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Meagan and I went to college together at the University of Maryland and met on the Women’s Club Soccer Team. While we have a similar athletic background and we are now both mamas, I just love Meagan’s story. She is one inspiring lady who seriously does it all…she takes care of animals, takes care of her daughter, she’s an amazing wife/daughter/sister, and now she is back to taking care of herself as well. Meagan is working toward BIG goals, and I couldn’t have been more thrilled that she decided to trust in me to join Team SPARK! and take this journey as a coach alongside me. She is a TEAM player, a HARD worker, and she DREAMS BIG. Not only has she had incredible success with her health + fitness journey (she has lost at least 42 lbs post pregnancy to date of this interview…and possibly more now), she is also building her own team and making great strides toward achieving that type of freedom she craves with the business side of coaching. She has grown so much, and I cannot WAIT to see where this journey will take her next!!
 
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Without further ado, I will let you read my interview with her below and you can meet her for yourself! 🙂
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1) Tell us about yourself (where you live, family, hobbies, interests, anything else that you would like to include about yourself). I live in Baltimore, MD with my husband and daughter. We have 2 dogs and 2 cats. My husband and I are both from PA so our families are atleast 1.5 hours away. I’m the oldest of 6 girls so life for me has always been crazy/busy, non stop, always on the go. Living away from family means that help with our daughter’s childcare can be a little difficult at times. I work three 12 hours shifts in a row as a registered veterinary technician (nurse) at a very busy animal hospital with a very high standard of care. So work can be exhausting (mentally and physically) and stressful but I love it. I also bartend on Saturday nights at Phillips Seafood Restaurant where I have worked since graduating from college (this year makes 9 years!). My husband’s days off are two of the days that I work so he can be home with Charlotte. On Saturdays I go into work with Charlie and hand her off to Daddy and then he takes her home. So we only have to pay for one day of childcare. This plan, however, does not allow us to have any days off together. That has it’s own challenges, of course. I don’t have much time or the ability for activities for myself (I used to play football, kickball, and softball on local social club teams) but when ever I have off, I have my daughter (and daddy is at work) and it’s not always easy to find help to watch her if I need/want to do something. So, I can’t do it, unless I can take her.
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I love sports, animals, being outside and being adventurous. I like doing anything that I can take the dogs along for. They love to swim and fetch, they are very active and energetic but it’s hard to bring them with me sometimes since it’s usually just me with Charlie and both of them.
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2) What is your fitness background? I played soccer for 16 years. In middle school, I ran track and played basketball too. In college and afterwards I played on several club teams for kickball, football, softball, volleyball, soccer. If you need a person on your sports team, I’m your gal. Haha. I may not be awesome at all sports, but I can get by in most of them. My Dad was a soccer player (He played for the San Jose Earthquakes in the 80s) and he always played softball when I was growing up, so my love of sports comes from him— he taught me everything I know about throwing a baseball and football and kicking a soccer ball. My mom was always active also, she was a flamenco dancer in a dance company when I was young, trained with a body builder and would often go on long runs when I was in high school. She used to take me to an MMA gym where we would take a boxercise class and tae-ke-bo class. So my fitness always revolved around sports. I didn’t like running for fun until college which was when I picked up a love for yoga also. Both were a great way for me to de-stress and clear my mind. As great as yoga and running are for my mind, I have always loved team sports.
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3) Why did you decide to become a Coach on Team SPARK? I wasn’t expecting to decide to be a coach that day in May 2017. I saw one of your posts about daring to dream. I think it just hit home for me and I knew I had to jump on it, without much thought, I jumped in. I had been feeling very BLAH for months. I was in a funk, a bad one. I WANTED to workout more, but I just couldn’t seem to get it done. I had started taking regular walks with the dogs and Charlie in the stroller and I was more conscious about what I was eating. I was 160ish pounds in Dec2016/Jan2017 and by April I was hovering around 145. So, progress was being made but I knew regular walks weren’t gonna to get me where I wanted. I just couldn’t seem to figure out how I was going to get it done. My husband is naturally tall and thin and would choose to eat Taco Bell every night if he could (even though he is an amazing cook). He wasn’t going to be the one to motivate me. We had worked half way through P90X twice (we could only ever seem to make it to 45ish days haha). He grew up playing volleyball and baseball. We played kickball together on a social team and he can be very competitive and that’s how we got through P90X. I worked out during the day because I worked nights then and he would workout when he got home from his day shift— we always kept each other on track. Nowadays, he’d rather not workout— so that leaves me to motivate myself. It wasn’t going very well. I didn’t want to get a gym membership, becauseI knew I wouldn’t use it. Plus, not all gyms have childcare and like I said before, I always have Charlie.
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I’d also been dreaming of not having to bartend on Saturday nights anymore. It’s not a bad gig, but I’m just ready to call it quits. The money I make there each month pays my gigantic student loan bill and although we could probably survive without it.. it seems stupid to not work 4 days a month to be able to make that payment. I was trying to figure out what else I could do that would allow us the freedom we have financially without making any sacrifices. After several weeks/months of feeling like there was something missing in more than 1 aspect of my life, there was your post. Dare to dream. I had been seeing your posts for years. Busy mom, fit mom, working mom. Killing it. So I said, what the hell. Why not try it, what could it hurt. I knew just being a challenger would not be enough to make this a lifestyle change. Being just a challenger would probably get me as far as I got with P90X and then I would fall off again. BUT being a coach, being able to motivate and inspire others? That should do the trick. I always loved being a team captain, I loved coaching, and I had been thinking about taking looking into teaching at the local vet tech school. I wanted something to spend my time that was fulfilling, that would allow me to help others. But coaching/teaching was just another something that would take me away from the house and require additional childcare costs and less time with family. COACHING was it! I could check off all the boxes. PLUS, even if coaching wasn’t a financial success, I would hopefully have my athletic self back again. I had been missing since college. So, without overthinking it, I said yes. I’m so happy I did.
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4) What was the first Beachbody program you tried? What did you like about it?  P90X. I liked how challenging it was and I liked that variety of workouts. Since becoming a coach, the first program I tried was 22 Minute Hard Corps, because I knew I liked Tony as a trainer, and I was familiar with him so I picked that one first. Plus the shorter workouts would make for an easier transition into a fitness routine.
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5) What was tough or challenging for you?  The hardest part at first was waking up early to get my workout in before my long shifts. That had been an excuse of mine for a loooooong time. There was no way that I would be able to wake up before a 12 hours shift earlier than I needed to just to work out. I had been working on eating better for a few months, but nutrition was also a big part of what I struggled with. Not because I don’t like healthy foods, but because I was terrible at planning and I would stop at fast food restaurants all the time because I wouldn’t have food in the house. I would stop in the morning on the way to work for breakfast— because I wouldn’t give myself enough time to eat at home— and I would stop when I was out running errands because it was easy. I was getting fast food at least 3-4 times a week AND going out to eat with hubby once a week or every other week. Shakeology has really helped with that, it’s my breakfast in the car on the way to work and my go-to lunch on my days off when we are out and about!
 
6) What has your progressed looked like in terms of pounds and inches? How did you stay motivated to get to this point?  I’ve lost 15 pounds and 10 inches since becoming a coach. I went from a size 10 to a 4 (just realized I was in a size 4 the other day)! My motivation came from the accountability/support groups. Watching everyone live busy lives and still find time to workout and eat right was great. It made me feel like I wasn’t alone. I knew it was going to be a constant battle and somedays I may lose the battle was I was going to win this war. It all comes back to my love of team sports. That was this is like for me. We are all on a team, we win together, we lose together, we support each other, we motivate each other. We all have something to learn from one another, and I find that the most inspiring. The honesty and the open-ness of the group allows for a safe place to be honest and open with yourself. Sharing my story has helped me stay on track and hearing how people are inspired by what I’m doing when I run into them, that’s worth it. Even if they aren’t joining my group or supporting my business, they are driven by when I share to be more active and make better choices. That’s huge.
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7) How do you feel today, and what are your goals moving forward?  I feel awesome. My goals are constantly changing, which is so cool! I’ve surpassed my original goals which is sooo surprising! Instead of quitting because I’ve reached my original goals (which is part of the reason I stopped P90X midway through— I felt like I was at a good place and could stop), I make new goals. Now that I’ve lost the weight, I want to build muscle and tone my body. I want to be able to one day do a hand stand and at least 5 pull ups. I want to continue inspiring other people to reach their goals. My ultimate goal is to inspire my husband to join me and start his own fitness journey. Any wife knows that you can’t make them do anything they don’t want to do, so I’ll just wait for him to have the grand idea all on his own. 🙂 Haha. I just want people to realize that if they WANT to do it, they can do it. I’m a TV junkie. I love naps. I love junk food. I procrastinate. I’m always late, and I hit the snooze at least 3 times every morning. But here I am, surprising myself everyday. If I can do this, anyone can do this.
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8) How has your life changed since become a Coach on Team SPARK? My life has changed in so many ways! I LIKE waking up early before work to work out. I feel energized, accomplished, and proud. I make regular trips to the grocery store and keep my fridge stocked with good foods to eat! I plan more, plan meals for the week, plan my days, and plan to be better than I used to be. I’m happier. I don’t feel sluggish or tired (sometimes yes, but not nearly as often as I used to). I’m confident. I like the person I see in the mirror and not just because of my pants size but because of what I’ve been able to accomplish. Being a coach has given me my life back, I feel like myself again.
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So flippin’ proud of this girl, and can you just look at that SMILE!!!! That is EVERYTHING. 🙂
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All it takes is a leap of faith when you dare to dream. This girl is doing it. And this team is going places. Watch us. Or join us. Only you can make that decision spark that fire and FLY.
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Hope you are all making the most of your week!
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XO,
Gina

One Year Later

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This afternoon I shared my results from my recent Hammer + Chisel program with my Challenge Group, and I came across my first “Before” photo that I took at 6 weeks post partum. Whew! Hard to look at for someone who has always been an athlete and in shape in the past. I am proud that with my body I was able to give life to two awesome little dudes, but I was eager to look and feel like my old self again. My mindset was much different than after my first pregnancy.

After my first pregnancy, I never really tried to get back to myself for a long time…18 months long. To be fair, I had to figure out who I was at a person since becoming a mom and I just didn’t understand how exercise could still fit into my lifestyle. I had many excuses…many of them were legit excuses…work, time, travel, gym commute, etc….but they were still excuses. I finally found a way to find that time for myself again when my son was 18 months old. I started the original P90X at home, and was SO pumped to start!!! …and then 2 days in I found out I was pregnant again with Baby #2. So while I did start my path of healthy eating, exercise, and “me” time, my journey was a little different than planned. 😉

After having my 2nd son, I was SO eager to finally get back to my daily routine and finally get in real shape again. My mindset had completely shifted and I had made that decision to go after some goals. I whipped out that 21 Day Fix and did 3 rounds in 3 months. My journey continued this past year with P90X3, 21 Day Fix Extreme, CIZE, 22 Minute Hard Corps, Country Heat, and lastly Hammer + Chisel. I honestly cannot believe I have been able to stick to so many programs over the past year, and this is the longest I have stuck to a routine in YEARS. I feel amazing, strong, my endurance is up, and even with little sleep and two little ones, I somehow have energy. With my busy schedule, I now cannot even imagine spending an extra time commuting to a gym or classes. These 30 minute home workouts + healthy eating (with treats of course!) + daily Shakeology have truly been a godsend for which I am so thankful!

Looking forward to rounding out my year with the 3 Week Yoga Retreat and the new kickboxing/MMA program, Core de Force. I love knowing what I have coming up, because it keeps me on track and helps me stick to a daily routine. Knowing how I felt after having my first son and then knowing how I feel now, there is no way I could ever go back!

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Hope you all had a great weekend, and you are enjoying this lovely Sunday evening!

XO,

Gina

P.S. The Country Heat Giveway winner was announced on my Facebook page, so head on over there if you want to hear more details about the package and who won the prize!

Sun Kissed

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Dress: ASOS / Shoes: Badgley Mischka / Earrings: Stella & Dot / Bracelet: Vintage / Sunglasses: Brickyard Buffalo / Lip: MAC Snob

Ahh this dress! During an online shopping spree for our June wedding season, I saw this dress at ASOS, and I just HAD to have it! I just love the bright neon florals for summertime, and it was perfect for the outdoor/indoor wedding we attended in Ithaca, NY. I hedged my bets with this one hoping it would fit as only the smaller size was available. I normally would have gone for the slightly larger one, but it seems my hard work in the “gym” aka my living room has paid off and I was able to slip into this delightful fit and flare silhouette! So happy that it worked out, and we had an amazing evening watching the sun go down and dancing the night away with great friends.

It’s been a busy summer here with lots of traveling and more coming up in the next few weeks! Nashville is SOOOOO soon!!! Eeeep! If you don’t remember, here is a post of me from last year’s Summit breakin’ it down with CIZE at 8 months pregnant! LOL! I am getting so excited to return to the place where I met all my coaching teammates in person for the first time and looking forward to learning from the best about how to keep moving my business forward and changing lives along the way.

In other news…not that you all particularly care, but the fellow moms out there might! We are in the midst of potty training with my toddler, and so far it’s going MUCH better than I had anticipated! I speed read the Oh Crap! book which helped to reassure me that we were more or less on the right track! I can’t believe we are crossing this big milestone and he seems to be aging SO rapidly right now! Threenager attitude and all! LOL! The baby learned to full out crawl and now a week later he is pulling himself to standing. SLOW DOWN KID! Ahhh they grow up too fast don’t they? But I do admit, it will be pretty darn cute (and terrifying) when they are running around together/in opposite directions. Haha.

Hope you are all having a great week so far!! I am having a blast with the Jam out in July Challenge!! I don’t know why I haven’t been blasting music in my house during my workouts already! SUCH a great idea and such great motivation!

Make it a happy one!

XO,

Gina

Three Hobbies

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I found this quote on Pinterest the other week, and it really got me thinking. Aside from love and family (because I think PEOPLE and relationships are #1 in my life ALWAYS), these three things are so vital for our day to day:

1) We need money to pay the bills, simple as that and then extra money is always great for the finer things in life (which for me is traveling the world and delicious food)

2) We need our health…not only does staying in shape help us to live longer, but it helps us stay energized and more focused throughout our day.

3) We need to feel creative and to feel a PASSION for something. To make things, build, expand…it’s in our human nature to create.

Now, I loved this quote because wouldn’t it be wonderful if we had hobbies to check off these necessities in our lives? But I thought “wait a minute…it doesn’t have to be THREE different hobbies…”*

Because since having started as a fitness coach…I have all of that in ONE!

*I make an income helping people get healthy, keeping them on track to reach their goals on a daily basis by providing motivation and support for not only the physical health of my challengers, but also their overall happiness, positivity, and confidence. On top of that, I help a team of coaches build their own businesses to reach financial freedom.

*Working out each day is part of my job. While I may not always want to roll out of bed and get my workout done each morning, I know that if and when I do, I will be so happy that I did and feel so much better for doing it.

*Each day I am building my creativity by coming up with fun posts to share with my challengers, growing my social media and challenging people to become better versions of themselves.

—BEST of all??? I can do this while staying at home with my two small children. I love my job. But I also love my job as a MOM, and with this opportunity, I didn’t have to choose. I could do BOTH 🙂

My team is opening up the curtain next Monday January 25th to show you what it’s like in the day of an online fitness coach. We will show you what it takes to build your own business (no matter how great or small), what our days are like, how we make money, and what your potential can be.

If YOU have been looking for MORE in this new year and want to find that SOMETHING that gives you PASSION and makes you want to get out of bed in the morning, then come take a look and see what it’s all about. No pressure, just a place to learn 🙂

***If you want to learn more, please fill out the short application linked below! I will respond back and we can connect as to whether or not this would be a good fit for you!***

https://pandpfitness.wufoo.com/forms/team-spark/

 

Make it a Happy Day!

XO,

Gina

Namaste November

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Happy Monday!!!

It’s FREE Challenge Group time!!! And this month, I am going to mix things up a bit with a NAMASTE NOVEMBER CHALLENGE!

Many of us have a LOT of stress coming up with the holidays…lots of parties to prep and plan for, lots of unhealthy comfort foods at every event, holiday shopping, decorating, you name it. I wanted to take this next week prior to all the craziness to just DECOMPRESS and CHILL OUT a bit.

Join me starting November 16th for a YOGA inspired challenge where we will come together for some low impact exercise, inspiration, healthy festive recipes, and tips for how to carve out time for physical and mental wellness during the chaos of the holiday season.

If this sounds like something you would enjoy or even if this is something brand new and outside the box for you, I would love to include you! Simply comment below with your e-mail address or e-mail me at gina.notes26@gmail.com. It’s going to be a fun week and will hopefully allow us to enter the holiday season this year with a little less crazy.

Namaste!

XO,

Gina

Summa Summa Summatime

21 Day Fix Invite July 13

Summa Summa Summatime!

It’s mid-summer and I am looking for 5 more women who want to commit to the next 3 weeks of healthy eating and fitness! There is still time to feel confident in that summer bikini, at that summer wedding, or at your family reunion, ladies. It all starts with you and your decision to change and make a difference both by being active and making smart choices in the kitchen.

My next round of the 21 Day Fix is starting up on July 13th, and I would love to help you reach your goals! It will include:

-A DIFFERENT workout each day of the week to keep things interesting
-An EASY to follow nutrition plan complete with portion control containers to map out what you should be eating each day
-30 MEALS of Shakeology – a super healthy drink packed with vitamins, nutrients, and super foods
-MYSELF as your personal coach and motivator
-3 week SUPPORT group full of other challengers like yourself where we will share inspiration, motivation, tips, recipes, etc.

Don’t let a busy schedule hold you back from making a change! Some of my best challengers with the most rockin’ results are busy moms, busy professionals, and have full plates. *30 min a day is only 2% of your day and anyone can make time for this program if they are ready to make a change.*

COMMENT below with your e-mail address if you would like to join the party or if you would like more information. You can also e-mail me at gina.notes26 {at} gmail.com if you want in!

Make it a good one!

XO,

Gina

Summer Sweat Sesh

Summer Sweat Sesh Invite

Can’t believe it’s almost JULY! This summer is flying by already. School is officially out and I know many of us are prepping for family vacations. Whoo hoo!

Starting July 6, I’m hosting a little Summer Sweat Sesh, because a dip in the pool always feels more refreshing after a nice workout right? Not to mention feeling even more fabulous in that swimsuit. 🙂

Most of the workouts are 30 min per day and are combined with a healthy eating plan. Our group will provide support and motivation each day along with workout tips, nutrition information, and yummy summer recipes.

So what do you say? Who’s in for a little sweat sesh this summer?

COMMENT below with your contact information or email me at gina.notes26 {at} gmail.com.

Cheers to Summer!

XO,

Gina

Happy New Year!

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The past year has been a bit of a roller coaster.  My family has suffered a lot of loss, but we have also shared in a lot of joy.  There have been changes in my career, trips across the country, exciting wedding celebrations, babies born, and interesting adventures.  Watching my son grow this past year has been the most amazing part.  He turned one in August with a nautical birthday party, and he has been soaking up knowledge like a sponge.  He amazes me every day with the way he communicates and how much he can remember.  He is sweet as pie and shows so much love and affection.  I feel incredibly blessed and lucky.

I also feel extremely lucky to have so much love and support from all of you.  Thanks for sticking by me this past year through the good times and the bad.  There were moments when it was tough to find the time or energy to continuing blogging and creating, but this is always a place I love to come back to, and I appreciate you all coming back here as well.  Some of your favorite posts from this past year included the beautiful fairytale wedding of Melissa and John, some creative ideas for engagement gifts, and when I tried out these fabulous new hair extensions.  I also heard from a lot of you about how I survived the first year of motherhood and the gear that got me through.  As always, please let me know what types of posts you would love to see more or less of in the coming year.

I can definitely say I am excited for what 2015 has to offer.  I’m going to jump into a P90X program starting TOMORROW, and I am so excited to get back into shape again.  I have always been athletic having played soccer and basketball my entire life through college and beyond.  After having my child, I have struggled to find the time and the energy to get into a regular workout routine.  When I was working outside of the home, I quite frankly hated to spend my free time away from my son.  Now that I am home most days, it’s tough to even have free time!  I received the P90X DVD program a couple years ago as a Christmas gift.  It was on my wish list and also on my bucket list as something I wanted to complete as a challenge to myself.  Although the program is still in the shrink wrap, it’s something I have not been able to let go.  I despise the feeling of not being in shape anymore, and although I have lost all of my baby weight, I do not feel like my healthy, energetic self anymore.  I plan on joining an online challenge group to keep myself motivated on this journey, and I am looking forward to feeling good again and setting a good example for my son.  If you are also interested in joining me in my fitness journey, please let me know and I would love to give you more information about the group.

Aside from getting fit and healthy, I am setting my sights on a family vacation to Tulum, Mexico!  I have never visited, but I have heard so many amazing things.  Our itinerary is completely open, so if you have any ideas or suggestions on where to stay or what to do while we are there, please share!

The photo above is from New Year’s Eve on my friend’s rooftop in Baltimore, MD.  We had a blast on our trip, although we are now trying to recover from the yucky sickness we managed to catch while away.  Poor lil guy has the croup plus a fever!  We have finally unpacked all of our Christmas goodies from the car, took down our tree, and put away all the decorations for the season.  I’m always sad when Christmas is over, but I am excited for a fresh start in 2015.

Hope you all had a wonderful year, and I am wishing you all the best for a happy, healthy new year in 2015!

XO,

Gina