Our May Body Back Transformation Sessions kick off the week of May 6th and we have a brand new instructor for our early morning Glen Ellyn session - Meet Lindsey! Lindsey joined our instructor team this spring, and she’s very excited to get her session underway and help women become their best selves. If you’ve been thinking about joining Body Back Transformation, read on about Lindsey and join her for a FREE Body Back Preview Class on...more
Meet our April Mom of the Month, Brittany! Brittany joined FIT4MOM to find some much needed socialization after her sweet boy, Trey, was born. Little did she know then that she would connect with so many mamas who would support her in this crazy journey of motherhood, and that Body Back would help transform her life and health! We are so happy...more
It’s week 2 of Body Back! I joined this session with pretty realistic goals in mind. I needed/wanted to cut back my wine ;), plan out meals and snacks better, and to overall stay accountable to better choices. I don’t want to and didn’t sign up with the intention to make huge life changes. I’m already great at staying up with workouts but the food....more
Welcome to the March Healthy Dinner blog! This month we’re making one of my favorite “better choice” meals, Tortellini with Tomatoes and Arugula.
Confession time… I L O V E carbs. Bread, risotto, russet potatoes, pasta, I love them all (especially pasta!) I tried cutting them out altogether once and it only lasted 5 days. It ended with garlic bread, deep dish pizza, and beer.
These days, my diet contains plenty of brown rice,...more
My 3rd daughter was born August 28th of 2018. Even though she’s my 3rd baby, there was so much about her that was a surprise. From experiencing the SLOWEST delivery of all 3 of my kids, to re-learning breastfeeding, to the changes in my postpartum body - it all felt so new. I am not sure if I just remembered the postpartum period as being easier because we block stuff out as moms, but this third kid hit me hard in ways I didn't expect. I knew...more
Welcome to the February Healthy Dinner blog. This month we’re celebrating! Quick kid-pleasing dinners are great most of the time, but every so often life gives us a reason to celebrate. Birthdays, anniversaries, etc., some events call for a special dinner. That doesn’t mean it has to be hard or unhealthy. This month we’re making Pan Seared Pork Tenderloin and Pureed Cauliflower.
This has been my go-to healthy celebration dinner for...more
Little Healthy Habits That Have a Big Impact on My Wellness
If you’re looking to make a change in your health and fitness, start small and build on your momentum. Here are a few of the little things I’ve implemented daily that add up to a greater impact:
1. Eliminate sugary beverages. Whether you were drinking a gallon of sweet tea or a can of Coke each day, these are empty calories and...more
Welcome to our January healthy dinner blog! This month we’re making easy Instant Pot Chicken Soup.
I don’t know about you, but in my family it seems like January is the month everyone get sick. In the last month we have had multiple colds, an ear infection, strep throat, pinkeye, and a stomach bug. Not only are my kids less likely to eat well when they’re sick, but I seem to forget how to feed myself. Taking care of sick children...more
This morning at Goldfish Swim School during my daughters’ lessons I saw one of my favorite mom boss business owners in town. She was doing something that I have learned is very, very important to motherhood. It was a small thing – something I easily could’ve missed had it not been on my mind lately. She had accepted help. Another mom was holding her baby for her while she got her older child out of the pool. It was only for a...more
A Tale of Two Dinners – Sheet Pan Chicken with Roasted Veggies
Before I had children I was full of parenting wisdom. Limited screen time! Educational toys! No whining! Eat what I cook! Six years later... my kids have their own tablets, Paw Patrol has exploded in my house, and one of my most frequent phrases is, “I don’t hear whining.” (We all know this is a lie, I definitely hear it.)
Also, my kids certainly...more
Carolyn, our December Mom or the Month, was hooked from her first class and has truly jumped into and embraced Our Village ever since. Carolyn found us when she was pregnant and even rearranged her work schedule when her maternity leave ended so she could keep coming to classes. We are so glad you did! We love having you in our classes and Our Village. Congratulations, Carolyn!
Hometown: I grew up in a small town in...more
I don’t know about you, but I have some amazing childhood memories of this time of year. Decorating, baking, visiting Santa, ice-skating, wrapping gifts and so much more were a source of joy and magic growing up. I loved decorating gingerbread men and playing in the snow. Making a wish list was always fun, especially when I received the gifts I wanted.
Now that I have children of my own, I realize that someone had to make all that...more
I have no idea how it happened, but Thanksgiving is almost here! The year has flown by and we’re coming into the holiday season. Thanksgiving might be one of my favorite holidays. I love spending time with family, cooking up a storm, and enjoying all the special occasion foods. Plus, there’s all the Thanksgiving leftovers! After a couple meals of mashed potatoes and gravy, I like to get creative with the leftover turkey. My favorite...more
Welcome to October’s Healthy Dinners blog! Autumn is here and the weather has turned chilly, so my menu is nonstop comfort food. Healthy comfort food, though, isn’t always easy to achieve. This month I perfected a healthy version of one of my favorites, moussaka.
Moussaka is Greek comfort food at its finest. I’m only ¼ Greek, but my family is all in on the food heritage! Moussaka is a winter staple at my parents’ house. It’s...more
Introducing Laura, our October Mom of the Month! Laura moved to Glen Ellyn from Chicago with her family in February of 2018. She found us through her neighbor, Amanda, who is a Stroller Barre instructor. She has a 3 ½ year old daughter, Macy, and a 9 month old son, Parker. Laura loves attending Stroller Barre - so much so that she became a Playgroup...more
Hello, Fall! September got off to a summery start, but cooler temperatures are finally on the way. One of my favorite parts of the season is changing up my recipe routine. Fall just begs for soups, stews, casseroles, and CHILI! We’ll cover all those categories over the next months, starting with chili.
Chili can be a controversial subject. If you go to a chili cook-off, you’ll see more styles than you can believe. And they’re all...more
For about a year, as I looked to the future, I couldn’t imagine what it looked like. I tried. I wanted to predict and to know, but our lives, our schedule, all of it would change this fall when we dropped our only two kids off at Kindergarten.
I half joked that I felt like I was about to be an empty nester. What would I do without my kids all day? Who would I go adventuring with? Who would provide some background noise and millions...more
Meet Nikki, our September Mom of the Month! Her nerves got the best of her as she drove to her 1st FIT4MOM class, but she tried again and was instantly hooked! She knew she had found “her people” and hasn’t looked back since. A mom to three beautiful girls, Nikki knows the importance of taking time for her own health and fitness. She has inspired moms in all of our classes, from...more
Our fall Run Club session starts up September 9th and we have a brand-new coach for this session! Haley takes on the role after being a Run Club member herself. She’s beyond excited to get the fall session underway. If you’ve been thinking about joining Run Club, read on about Haley and then go here to sign up for the fall session!
Welcome to the August Healthy Dinner blog! We’re taking a break from our quest for healthy family friendly dinners to focus on another meal: lunch! I’ve laid out some strategies for healthy, easy, and fun lunches that your kids will actually eat (especially those big kids heading off to school)! My kids don’t love sandwiches, so we’re thinking outside the bread. We’re also working on independence by packing lunches together. These...more
It’s here! The final home-stretch of my pregnancy! It’s hard to believe really. This started so, so long ago and seemed so far away, even back in June, and now I only have about a week left until my due date. So much is changing in our family’s lives in the next few weeks. New schools with new classrooms for the girls, new baby and new au pair, and of course new routines for all of us. Thinking about the routine changes is in some ways a huge...more
This month we are celebrating one of the many twin mamas in Our Village, Kristen. Kristen is a mama to two adorable and very, very busy 1 year old twins. She has been a member of our classes for a year and started when the twins were infants. She's a loyal client that comes to Stroller Strides &...more
Wow, mamas... Can you believe summer is over halfway over?! School starts next week for us. Eeek. Time is flying by! And on top of it all, our new baby will be here in (give or take) 3 weeks. I find this time to be bittersweet. I love the summer days with my girls, but I am also looking forward to the routine of the fall. The slightly more predictable schedules and cooler temps are calling my name.
But I don’t want to rush things! It...more
It’s time for a healthy dinner! Well, part of a healthy dinner. Summer is peak grilling season and I don’t need to give you a recipe to grill a chicken breast. Instead, here are a couple new side dishes to liven up your grilled proteins! This month we’re making Mediterranean Lentils and Watermelon Salad.
I don’t know about you, but grilling has never been a “night off” from cooking. My husband manages the grilling, but I’m inside...more
We are so excited to announce Dawn as our July Mom of the Month! Dawn has always been an active runner. She joined our Body Back Transformation session in the spring and had truly AMAZING results! She figured out a plan to balance out workouts with her work schedule, prepare healthy meals for herself and family and stayed accountable to the meal...more
Who likes turkey burgers? Who has accidentally made dry, rubbery turkey burgers? If your answer is “yes” we have the recipe for you in this month’s blog. Zucchini Turkey Burgers are a delicious take on a healthy summer favorite!
This recipe came from a favorite recipe source in our FIT4MOM village, Skinnytaste. I tried a few little tweaks and even made it in bulk and froze some for later. It comes together quickly and you can cook the...more
Every summer I have the best intentions to start a “summer bucket list” for my kiddos... Well this is the year! My girls are now 4 and 6 (how did that happen?!) and I finally am committing to accomplishing it this summer! (Could be part of my nesting for baby #3, too? I’m already starting to feel the mom guilt of another baby joining our family so I’m doing all I can to make this one of their best summers yet! Of course, I want it to be one...more
Alright mamas, whoa! This heat has been CRAZY, right?! We know you have lots of things on your summer bucket list (including our FIT4MOM DuPage County classes!) and want to find some ways to help you stay cool this summer while out having fun. We’ve put together a quick, go-to list of our favorite “keep cool” items for the summer. Check them out below!
And stay tuned for our blog post next week… 2018 Summer FIT4MOM DuPage County Bucket...more
All right mamas, I’m calling it. I’m overwhelmed. Anyone else feeling this way, too?
I will never call myself an expert at being a small business owner. I have spent a lot of time over the last few years listening to productivity podcasts and reading blogs in hopes of learning some tricks to balancing it all. It’s important to be manage your time well and be efficient in order to get everything done that goes into running a successful...more
Welcome to the May Healthy Dinner Blog! This month we’re featuring Baked (or grilled)* Salmon and Veggies. It’s plenty of protein with an Omega-3 bonus, in a super quick meal with easy cleanup. Salmon is one of the only meals that EVERYONE in my family eats without any complaint (as long as they don’t see any pepper on their piece, kids!) It’s a staple in our weekly meal rotation, and while I occasionally get complicated, this basic recipe is...more
This month we are excited to announce Ashley as our Mom of the Month! Ashley is a twin mom (one of many in our village of mamas) and has rocked out many of our classes. She gives 110% in all of her workouts and always has a smile on her face. She supports other mamas and takes the support in return. Congrats Ashley!
- Hometown: St. Charles, but we live in Wheaton now.
This month we are thrilled to announce our mom of the month, Meagan. Meagan is a FIT4BABY pre-natal client with us. She has the biggest smile on her face during classes and has truly just jumped right into FIT4MOM. This is her first pregnancy and she found us of course on Facebook. ;) Welcome to Our Village Meagan! We absolutely love you and can't wait to meet your sweet baby...more
Spring is officially here and summer is on the way! One of the things I love about the changing seasons is switching up my recipe repertoire. My favorite warm weather recipe is chicken salad, hands down. It’s a great make-ahead meal and there are endless variations. Plus, while the traditional version isn’t winning any nutritional awards, it’s easy to make it healthy and filling!
I made three different chicken salads this month. The...more
Today I’m starting this blog post from a crazy loud dance studio watching my girls practice. I’ve been thinking about some ideas for at least 3 days now, so I’m finally getting focused and putting my thoughts down on paper – or, should I say, computer! It’s hard to believe, but sometimes I find the best concentration in a room full of noise. I think this comes from life as a work-from-home mom. There’s always noise, always distractions, and...more
Meet Diane! Diane found FIT4MOM while on her maternity leave with her sweet boy, Jack. Heading back to work, Diane was far from done with Our Village. She has completed two Body Back transformation sessions, which completely changed her life. And did you know Diane helps plan all our Mom’s Night Out events? We are so thankful for all you do and all you bring to this Village and are so lucky you found us!
Welcome to our March healthy dinner blog! Every month we feature recipes that provide protein and veggie rich options for families. This month we’re tackling enchiladas. This recipe has a few more steps than some of our previous ones, but they’re pretty simple and the results are delicious and healthy.
If you are looking for a restaurant style traditional enchiladas, don’t make this recipe. I love traditional enchiladas, but I made them...more
As I sit here thinking about how to start this blog, my two girls, ages 4 and 5, are upstairs randomly shouting from their bed. Not shouting words, just strange animal sounding noises. This is one of the times of day that I pray for quiet. For alone time. For calm. But these quiet moments of alone time won’t last long as baby number 3 is coming quicker than I can imagine. August will be here before I know it. As crazy as my girls are, I love...more
This month we are honored to have Audrey as our MOM of the month. She moved to the area, and after having attended FIT4MOM elsewhere, she knew she would take advantage of her year long maternity leave. She has been a regular in both Stroller Barre and Stroller Strides classes since she started with us last August. She's always smiling in classes, has a wonderful attitude, and is so easy to talk to. She has a such a kind, gentle demeanor and...more
’ve been thinking about this blog post for a while now… about nine weeks to be exact... *wink-wink*
2017 was a crazy year for my family and me. We moved twice, my girls started becoming little ladies, my husband traveled a lot and I had a miscarriage. It was wild and full of highs and lows. I started 2018 by reflecting on all that happened during the last year and I chose three words as my mantras for the year: change, chaos and...more
Welcome to the February edition of healthy dinners!
This month we are featuring quinoa crust pizza. Full disclosure: this is not a pizza. If you have pizza purists in your family (my children insist that only Costco frozen pizza is real pizza), then call this dinner something else! I go with cheesy sausage pie for my family.
This is my new favorite pizza! Sure, the crust takes a little getting used to. But once you accept...more
Kim found our Body Back Transformation program in the fall of 2017 and embraced it fully. While she hadn't worked out regularly in a long time, she jumped in to the Body Back routine and gave her workouts her all. She's famous for her post-workout selfies that motivate her fellow moms and she maintains an amazing positive attitude. Kim has learned that there are people who...more
Wow, it's 2018! I remember as a kid when it turned to the year 2000. How excited, but nervous people were. That feels like forever ago, but also like yesterday.
On the first day of 2018, I found myself sitting in front of my fireplace with a hot cup of tea before my kiddos are awake. I loved seeing everyone’s favorite photos of 2017 on social media yesterday, with many people posting their best 9 images. Their reflection caused me to...more
I don’t know about you, but every New Year someone in my family resolves to eat healthier. This month I’m sharing one of my favorite quick and healthy recipes. It’s full of lean protein and healthy veggies. And the best part? All three of my kids happily ate it! This month I’m sharing with you… Asian Turkey Lettuce Wraps!
I love this recipe for so many reasons:
- it’s a quick weeknight dinner
- it has a variety of...
This week, during Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month, I became 1 in 4. I found out today that my almost 9 week old baby has no heartbeat.
I discovered very early that I was pregnant. It was the first month of trying for our 3rd child, and the day I missed my period I took the test.
When it was positive, I was truly filled with joy. We wanted this baby so much, and for it to happen on the first try felt like a miracle in...more
We are excited to introduce Michelle Alvarado as our December Mom of the Month! Michelle has been a member of Our Village for about a year now. She went from being a dedicated Stroller Strides and Stroller Barre mama with her sweet and smiley son Joey to play group captain this summer, where all the kids adore her! You are almost guaranteed to see her in classes most days of the week as she said “she is a FIT4MOMer till the wheels fall off!”...more
November's Mama of the Month is the one and only Karri Paxson. If you have taken a class with Karri, she is the one that probably gave you a warm smile at any point during the workout. Karri married her husband, Doug, about 5 years ago, and has Morgan (3) and Braydon (1). We are pretty much obsessed with Karri's enthusiasm for a community of moms. She even organized getting a group of mamas from her Body Back class to run the Hot Cider 5K...more
This month we are honored to have Ann as our Mom of the Month. Ann, like many mothers, was desperate for some sleep and found us through our Sleep Chat Mom’s Night Out about a year ago. She has been a dedicated Stroller Strides and Stroller Barre mama ever since and just recently jumped into our Body Back program! Ann is always smiling and so encouraging to everyone she meets. We are so lucky she found...more
Meet Jean! Jean found FIT4MOM through a Google search and after taking the leap to try a Body Back class, she knew it was just what she needed! Since then, she has completely transformed her lifestyle and her body through multiple Body Back sessions. She is a wonderful example of health and strength to other mamas but also to her kiddos who join her in our Stroller classes as well. We are so glad you found our community of like-minded mamas,...more
Meet Kate! Kate found us when her youngest was 9 months old and we have loved seeing her and her two boys at Saturday Stroller Strides ever since! Body Back has changed this mama's health and time; while she may be a multitasking genius, she has made time to care for herself a priority and everyone has noticed. She has a sweet and calming presence with a beautiful smile. We are so happy to have Kate as part of Our...more
Meet Haley! Haley is a momma of two little ladies that found our FIT4MOM village on bedrest in the hospital. Haley is one of the strongest mamas we know and love how she jumped right into our classes and village of mamas. She has a huge smile, positive attitude, and welcoming spirit. We are so happy you found our community of mamas Haley!
- Hometown: I was born and raised in Deer River, Minnesota; located 100 miles...
Meet our June mom of the month - Anna Vriesma. Anna has been a member of Our Village since June 2015. If you've met Anna in a class you will know she has a very soft-spoken, kind, and gentle spirit. She is a mama that cares for others and will go out of her way to make someone else's day. She's rocked our Body Back program, Stroller Strides and now Fit4Baby!!! Congratulations Anna! We are so happy you found us. You've touched the lives of so...more
This month we are honored to have Brynn as our MOM of the month. Brynn has been a member of Our Village for almost a year. She found FIT4MOM on her maternity leave with her second child and hasn't stopped attending classes since. She went back to work full time and promptly joined our Body Back program. She's always smiling in classes, has a wonderful attitude and will pick you up whenever you are down. She has a heart of gold and we are so...more
We are so excited to introduce Asya Boshnakov as our March Mom of the Month! Asya has been a member of Our Village since August 2016. Asya has been a dedicated Stroller Barre mama since she began classes last summer with her sweet little man Blago and has since added some Stroller Strides classes to the mix as well. She just recently started her first session of Body Back and dove in head first. Asya is a different mom than when she joined us...more
We are so excited to introduce Lindsey Driscoll as our February Mom of the Month! Lindsey has been a member of Our Village since February 2016. Lindsey is dedicated to attending Stroller Strides and Stroller Barre classes 3 times a week every week without fail where her adorable son Trevor always warms our hearts with his giggle. Lindsey also shows us her dedication and focus as she began attending Body Back Boost classes recently as well....more
We are so excited to introduce Mara Sventeckis as our January Mom of the Month! Mara has been a member of Our Village since July of 2015. After more than a year of Stroller Strides, Mara made the leap to Body Back, and saw amazing results. Her determination and focus are evident in every workout. You can find her most days at Wheaton Stroller Strides, surrounded by her happy, spunky, and smily boys, Peter and Martin. We're so happy to have...more
We're excited to announce our newest mom of the month - Corinne! Corinne found FIT4MOM Glen Ellyn / Wheaton when she was moving to Wheaton. She jumped right into our 8 week Body Back transformation session. She decided shortly after joining Body Back to try Stroller Strides with her daughter Madelyn. Madelyn loves her buddies in class is always the first one to start singing the smile song at the end of class. Congrats Corinne! We are so...more
- Hometown: I was born in Kalamazoo, Michigan but spent most of my childhood in Brookfield, Illinois.
- Tell us about who is in your family: My husband, Jon (or “the cop” as I typically refer to him), and I have been married almost 5 years, and we adopted our son, Lucas, in August of 2014 when he was 5 weeks old. We also have a dog, two cats, and three chickens at...
Our November Mom of the Month is Michelle Farmer. Michelle has been a FIT4MOM Glen Ellyn / Wheaton client for 8 months. She joined our classes after being referred by a friend when her youngest daughter was about 3 months old. She rocks our our classes with a positive attitude a commitment to being a healthy mom. She loves showing her kiddos what it means to be happy and fit too! Congrats Michelle! We are so happy you're part of Our...more
We're so excited to introduce our September MOM of the Month - Caitlin Massa. Caitlin recently moved to Glen Ellyn from the city and jumped right into our workouts at 6 weeks post partum. She has recently accepted the job of Playgroup Captain in Glen Ellyn too! She always has a HUGE smile on her face and welcomes every mom at our classes. She's a gem and we're lucky to have her! Congrats Caitlin!
- Hometown: Born and...
We are so excited to announce our August MOM of the month - Lisa Hyland. Lisa has been a member of Our Village for over a year. She's taken our Stroller Strides class, 2 Body Back sessions and our running club. She's overcome injuries this year and has found a source of inner strength as she navigates taking care of herself and two busy little boys. She's always prepared for classes with a big smile and positive attitude. Congrats Lisa and...more
We are so excited to announce Laura as our MOM of the Month for June! Laura joined our FIT4MOM franchise 2 years ago this month. She's been an active member of our Stroller Strides, Stroller Barre, and now Fit4Baby classes. Her son, Elliot, sings the smile song with us after every class and has formed strong friendships with his Stroller buddies. :) We can't wait to welcome baby #2 into Our Village...more
We are thrilled to announce Kristin Hildebrand as our May Mom of the Month! Kristin and Kate joined Our Village in February of 2016. Both of the Hildebrand ladies have beautiful smiles and a positive attitude. Kristin is always introducing herself to new moms and truly is a light in our classes. She began with Stroller Strides then added in Stroller Barre to her routine and also our latest running club! We're so thankful that you found us...more
We are thrilled to announce Leslie Ungson as our April Mom of the Month! Hard-working, spunky, and determined, Leslie has been a Body Back client since the start of this year. She took a very brave step and signed up for the program on her own- never having met the instructor or her classmates. On the first night of our physical assessments, she struggled and barely got through the exercises. By the end of our 8-week session, she not only...more
We are so excited to announce our latest Mom of the Month - Sally Belter! Sally started attending Stroller Strides in Glen Ellyn in October of 2015 with her daughter Ellie. No matter what is going on in her life - Sally always has a smile on. She is welcoming and friendly to all of the moms in classes. She truly lights up a room! Recently Sally joined our Lombard Body Back session. She gives 110% at her workouts and has goals of being a...more
We are so excited to honor Ashley Grice as our MOM of the Month! Ashley has been a member of our Village since summer of 2015 when she began attending Stroller Strides with her two adorable sons, Caleb and Daniel. Her warm smile, compassionate heart, and passion for health & wellness instantly connected her to our other...more
Please join us in congratulating our December Mom of the Month, Emily! Emily has been sweating, singing and smiling in Stroller Strides since July 2014. Mom to 2 year old Ellie, we love Emily's amazing energy, positivity and hard work. We are even more excited to have Emily in all our Strides classes these days as she is expecting Baby #2 in April. Emily has used our classes to stay fit, keep in touch with mom friends, and help that little...more
Powerful, strong, fun loving, and carefree are the words that come to mind when we think of Megan Millner! Megan just finished up our fall 2015 session of Body Back. She lost over 12 pounds in our program. She is always smiling! Her attitude towards life and motherhood is so much fun. She has fulfilled her childhood ambition too. We are so thankful to have you in Our Village Megan!
- Hometown: I was born and grew up...
"Inspiring, friendly, dedicated, and positive" are what comes to mind when our FIT4MOM village thinks of Jessica. She joined our franchise at our very first grand opening in May of 2014. Jessica had her third baby in December of 2014. As a busy mom of 3 children, Jessica still makes time to workout. She schedules kids classes and programs around Stroller Strides and is a dedicated member of Our Village. She is a light to other moms in class...more
Meet our MOM of the month - Stacey Barrow!
"Hard working, inspiring to her daughter, supportive, motivated, and caring" were the words used by the FIT4MOM GE Wheaton instructor team when nominating Stacey. Stacey joined our village in spring of 2015 and has told us many times she wishes she would have found us sooner! She gives 110% to every single class she attends and is such an inspiration to her 2 year old daughter...more
Meet Cassie Amann our MOM of the month!
Cassie was nominated to be our MOM of the month this month by our instructor team for many reasons. Cassie joined our village of moms earlier this year and has been a tremendous inspiration to those around her. While on her maternity leave with her second son, she has been attending Stroller Strides classes in Wheaton and has joined our Body Back program. Cassie gives 110% effort in every single...more
Welcome to this month’s Healthy Dinner blog! This month I’m writing about one of my all-time favorite recipes, Anytime Egg Bake. It is quick, easy, healthy, and full of veggies and protein. We eat it for breakfast, lunch, or dinner and it is great leftover. It’s a fantastic recipe to use if you’re trying to get more vegetables into your breakfasts.
This recipe started out as a crustless quiche from The Frugal Gourmet, by Jeff Smith. (He...more
Welcome to February's Healthy Dinner blog!
Earlier this month, I posted a Question of the Week in our Village Facebook Group about soups and stews. Everyone shared their recipes. I tallied up the 'likes' and votes on our favorites and Erica's Coconut Curry Lentil soup won. The original recipe comes from vegangela.com, but I made a few small...more
This month I tested out a couple different versions of one of my husband’s favorite foods, meatloaf.
He’s a good sport about all my Body Back inspired dinners, but every so often he likes to have something a little more like the foods he ate growing up.
Meatloaf is one of those classic American meals. It’s tasty and kids tend to like it. The problem,...more
Welcome back to our Healthy Dinners blog! I'm lightening things up this month, since so many of us are committing to better nutrition in the new year. Our menu is Creole Salmon Cakes with Not-Really-Remoulade Sauce.
I'm a big fan of salmon cakes. They're quick, easy, and versatile. I made Creole cakes for this blog, but I'll include a couple variations for different flavor combos at the end of the post.
Full disclosure: this is...more
Welcome to the Our Village's Healthy Dinners blog series! I'm Caroline Colley and I'll be your host for this culinary adventure. Each month I'll cook a new recipe and use My Fitness Pal to break down the nutritional facts. Then I'll feed it to my husband and 3 year old twins, and report back to you on the results. Happy cooking!
Look no further for a healthy sweet treat to celebrate Valentine's Day! Our lead instructor and resident Chef Miss Erica prepared a delicious recipe for you!
Cacao Coconut Truffles
Recipe by Erica Emme Spear
Yields: 16-20 Truffles
A super satisfying after dinner-treat free of processed sweetener. Protein and nutrient dense, these “truffles” are a perfect alternative to sugar-laden desserts and...more
Today was our last Spring 2018 Body Back class. It seems fitting that our very last class of the session was the first that we were able to hold outside at Seven Gables. Transformation – spring is here at last. Like the first flowers of the season, we’ve made our way through the ups and downs of the past 8 weeks, setting down roots and turning to the sun to grow and flourish.
It sounds cliché but each session I complete helps me...more
I ran my first 5K this weekend. One year ago, I would have been running only if someone was chasing me. This weekend, my kids cheered me on at the finish line as I surprised even myself and crushed the time goal I had set.
A 5K is only 3.2 miles – not the most impressive physical accomplishment but for me, it represented so much more: Setting a goal. Going outside my comfort zone. Pushing myself and my body. Accomplishing that goal....more
Week 7 is when it all comes together. The hard work and habits you’ve created during the past weeks are visible. The power of your results at this point in the session is that it gives you the motivation to keep going and finish strong.
Everything fell into place for me this week – a rare moment when the stars aligned just right. It started with my workouts: I noticed how much my form has improved over the past seven weeks and how much...more
We are still right in the middle of the hardest part of Body Back, going into Week 6. Last week, I vowed to find motivation and push harder. I did: I fit in all of my scheduled at-home workouts and stayed with the meal plan, even though I didn’t have a lot of time for prep. That meant a lot of last-minute meals, and spontaneity is not my specialty on weeknights.
At class this week, our introduction question was, “What’s one thing you...more
Week 5 is when Body Back starts to get hard. The initial excitement is fading; the energy you had for prepping and planning and fitting in extra workouts is waning; maybe (like me) your willpower isn’t quite as strong as it was when you started out. Maybe (like me) you’ve gone off-plan a few times and are struggling to get back on track.
At the mid-point of the session, you have a choice: You can slack off and fizzle out. Or you can...more
Week 4: Finding Balance
Week 4 of Body Back is starting on Easter, a holiday celebrated in no small part with sugary treats and chocolate everywhere. I went into the weekend just finishing up more than two weeks of a sugar detox. So, finding balance over this holiday weekend was my goal – both my challenge and my success for the week.
I planned for the weekend. I made sure to fit in all of my workouts, including...more
This week, I’ve just been running. Not heart-healthy, cardio exercise kind of running, but nonstop, never-sit-down busy-ness. Running to daycare, to the office, to appointments or errands on lunch, back to work, back to daycare, back home. Rushing to get dinner on the table. Rushing through bathtime, rushing through bedtime – even through those precious snuggles and stories in bed.
But mom life is never not going to be busy, so my...more
Week 2: Finding Routines for Success
It’s Week 2 of Body Back already. Every session, I’m amazed again at how the time flies by. Certainly, the program keeps you busy. It’s this paradox of Body Back that keeps me coming back session after session: During the eight weeks, I’m busier than ever before – planning and prepping, cooking healthy meals, fitting in at-home workouts, and staying active in the group Facebook page...more
Confession: I went into Assessment Night tonight feeling unmotivated. I just wanted to get it over with. I didn’t feel like pushing myself; I really didn’t think I could keep improving my numbers, so why bother actually trying?
But here’s the thing a friend’s husband said to her about the same issue, which she mentioned to me as we were chatting in between weigh-ins and measurements. He told her tonight, “If you’re not going to push...more
It’s Sunday morning, 10 AM, and my kitchen is already trashed. Blender dripping with the remnants of smoothie. Instant Pot cooking chicken breasts to shred for salads. Egg muffins baking in the oven. Little pieces of chopped veggies EVERYWHERE. And me, sipping black coffee in the middle of it all.
My husband surveys the mess, sighs, and says, “Body Back starting again already?”
He knows me well by now. This is the start of my...more
The first year with a new baby – whether it’s your first, second, or sixth – is unequivocally all-consuming. The feeding, the lack of sleep, the crying, the feeding, the bouncing/rocking/soothing, and oh yeah, did I mention the feeding? It’s endless. Couple that with the inevitable self-doubt and second-guessing that comes with parenting, especially parenting a newborn, and it’s easy to see how the first year flies by. It’s a daze of...more
Hi! I'm Sarah, and currently in my second session of Body Back. I have spent the last 20 years taking care of and putting others first -- so much of my adult life. First, it was as a mental health counselor. Then, I was a stay at home mom and wife for my three girls, now ages 11,14, & 16, and my husband. I also spent these 20 years thinking my needs were second to those who I care about.
I had consistently been...more
One of my biggest goals when starting the FIT4MOM program was not a fitness goal. Outside of getting heathy I desperately wanted to create more balance in my life. Let me be real honest… When I started this program, I didn’t know what I was talking about. And I didn’t know how I was going to go about creating more balance in my life. And then over the course of the last two weeks I got real with myself.
Over the last two weeks, I’ve...more
We asked some of our Body Back alumni to give us the real scoop on what Body Back is like, from the workouts to the meal plan, from the results to the private Facebook group. These are their words.
Q: What are the workouts like?
- At first, they were HARD and really humbling!! However, as I stayed on my at-home workouts and kept giving 100% in class, they got easier and easier.
- The workouts are an...
I can adult today.
99% of the time I’m grateful for all I have. I recognize and genuinely know that my life is (comparatively) easy. Some moments though life feels weighty, a bit cumbersome. In those moments I find solace in the phrase: “I can adult today.”
What is adulting?
Ask Google: “What does it really mean to be a grown up?”
Answer: “Becoming an adult is different for everyone. For some young...more
Be the best you can be.
We all have a lot going on in our lives. Some of us feel like we are constantly nursing sick kiddos back to health, some of us feel like the featured star on HGTV as we prep our homes to sell, and some of us are a hot sweaty version of “Amazing Race” trying desperately to navigate through the grocery store. One thing can be said for ALL of us moms. No matter the task, ALL of us are devoted to being the best we...more
I can accomplish anything in 60-seconds.
Each FIT4MOM class ends with meditation; allowing time for individual reflection connecting mind, body and soul. During mediation I’ve realized that becoming emotionally fit is just as important to me as becoming physically fit.
Many of you are getting to know me through this blog. Great, glad to meet you! What you don’t know about me is that I spend 8.5-plus hours a day in the corporate...more
On Sunday I attended my first Fit4Mom session alongside eleven women all at varying stages of motherhood. As each woman introduced herself and committed herself to achieving her goal with me, it was clear that we all share struggles; we all have our imperfections, but we were all great listeners who were funny, talented, successful, joyful and ready for this journey to begin. This journey is going to be difficult – but, every journey is...more
Follow Kimberly on her 8 week journey through our Body Back® program!
Get to know Kimberly as she works towards balancing work, family, fitness and a heathy lifestyle.
Why did we choose Kimberly? Actually, she chose us. After having baby number one in June of 2015, Kimberly’s pre-pregnancy clothes fit as snuggly as pre-pregnancy clothes should post-partum. But, her confidence and self-esteem was at an all-time low. During the...more
Here's what Lindsay had to say in week 8:
Biggest challenge of the week
My biggest challenge this week is that this Body Back session is over. I'm now trying to figure out how to continue with my new great habits. Getting in my workouts will be the most challenging part. I plan to make good use of the Boost drop in sessions.
Biggest Success of the week
Where do I begin? I lost 13 lbs...more
Here's what Lindsay had to say in week 7:
Biggest challenge of the week
I have noticed myself starting to slip into an old eating habit, nibbling off of other people’s food. “Oh let me just eat a few fries off of your plate, I’ll just a have a few bites of mac and cheese, just a taste of that cookie.”
Biggest success of the week
My goal this session was to fit into my clothes. It is...more
Here's what Lindsay had to say in week 5:
Biggest challenge of the week
I am still struggling with the follow through on at home workouts. I put on exercise clothes and then will do anything other than workout. I really cannot put my finger on what is holding me back. I am trying to make it to as many extra classes a week to make up for what I am lacking at home.
Here's what Lindsay had to say in week 4:
Biggest challenge of the week
This was a rough week! We were hit by the stomach flu, a stint of sleep regression (two teeth popped today ☺), and good old winter blues/cabin fever. I was the kind of tired where it feels like someone punched you in the face when you wake up in the morning. When I feel like this the last thing I want to do is make healthy food choices and...more
Here's what Lindsay had to say in week 6:
Biggest challenge of the week
I actually had a hard time coming up with a challenge this week. Last week I talked about my new routines feeling like habits. I was on the go a lot this week, but was prepared with healthy snacks and good eating out choices. In the past this would have easily derailed my meal plan, but now I can keep on track without missing a...more
Biggest challenge of the week
Up until yesterday I have not felt deprived and have not had to fight any major cravings. Suddenly all I can think about is ice cream mixed with candy. Blizzard, McFlurry, Cement Mixer, I would gladly eat any of them. Not giving into this craving is currently an ongoing challenge for me. I also continue to struggle with sticking to at home workouts.
Here's what Lindsay had to say in...more
Here's what Lindsay had to say in week 2:
Biggest challenge of the week
We celebrated my birthday this weekend. I made a conscience decision ahead of time to deviate from the food plan while out to dinner and drinks on Friday night. The challenge for me was making the decision ahead of time. I knew that if I was undecided going into the night I would be fretting over every food and drink option that came my way,...more
Follow Lindsay on her 8 week journey through our Body Back® program! Each week she will answer the same three questions: she’ll tell us her biggest struggle, her biggest success, and how she's feeling.
Why did we choose Lindsay? She’s a mom that has been part of Our Village since pregnancy. She took our Fit4Baby® program. She also enjoys Stroller Strides® and Stroller Barre® with her two kiddos. She has been thinking and talking about...more
Name: Caroline, Mom to three year old twins
Stats: 18 pounds and 10.25 inches lost during the session, 26 pounds lost in total
What I Learned: I’m worth it.
Hi Everyone! My name is Caroline, and I have 3 year-old twin balls of energy, Ben and Tess. We've been part of FIT4MOM for just over a year now. This spring I decided to take a step outside my comfort zone and sign up...more
'Twas the month before Christmas, when all through the house
not a spot on the floor was uncovered by a toy
and all I could do was sigh and drink my LaCroix...
Two of the most valued and sought after elements of a momma's life are TIME and SPACE. All year we find ourselves searching for ways to find a little more time for ourselves and our kids and dread the thought of having to find more space for...more
Last week was Share the Love week at FIT4MOM. We wanted to keep that spirit going, so here's story of two mamas in Our Village who are sharing real love and support in the form of meal swaps.
Lindsay and Danielle are both veterans in Our Village, and this year, they're in Body Back together (different sessions, but at the same time). They came up with the idea of swapping healthy, plan-approved meals to make cooking and eating right...more
One of my New Year’s Resolutions this year was a little different than others I’ve made in the past. In 2017, I want to feel like I’m able to handle things.
Note that my actual ability to handle those things is not the issue. The operative word in the statement is “feel.”
I’m a Type-A person, and I’m a Mom. No matter what, I will handle whatever is thrown at me.
It’s how I feel while handling those things is the problem....more
I love food, especially when I don’t have to prepare it or clean up afterward. But dining out is a treat I enjoy much less frequently now that I have kids. The whole experience is just much more stressful with little ones in tow, and sometimes it’s easier to stay home. However, here are five options in the Glen Ellyn/Wheaton/Lombard area that make dining with kids possible, and actually pretty delicious/fun.
Halloween is officially over. Now what? We’ve got tons of candy, carved pumpkins and tired kiddos at our house. Well I’ve got a few ideas for you on what to do with your candy, where to donate your pumpkins and how to get your energy levels back up!
- Donating candy can mean cash $$$ - Our fiends at Yorktown Center are having a candy buy back event this week. Nov 1 -5 You can bring your candy into Yorktown Center’s guest services...
To know Erica Spear is to love her. She's a motivating, loving, empathetic instructor, coach and friend.
When we found out she'd be moving to Seattle by the end of the year for her husband's job, we were certainly sad. But we were also insanely happy for the time that we were able to spend with her.
We've all learned a lot from Erica, but the feeling is mutual. So, we asked her to describe what this Village means to her, and to...more
My second daughter was born in August. After a brief maternity hiatus, I’m back on the blogging train. I thought I’d celebrate by doing a little Q&A.
So, here are three questions I can answer definitively (or not so definitively, depending on how you look at it) now that I have more than one child.
Question 1: Does pregnancy go by faster or slower the second time around?
Both. Sometimes at the exact...more
Meet Karen Gravlin. Karen has been taking FIT4MOM classes since December of 2015. She started with us at our Fit4Baby pre-natal class as a client and loved our franchise so much she jumped on to our instructor team! We are so excited to share Karen's rocking energy at our Saturday Yorktown classes with Our Village!
- Why did you decide to become a FIT4MOM instructor? When I took Fit4Baby I thought about becoming an...
Meet Ashley Giganti. Ashley has been an instructor with our team since June of 2015. Ashley has 2 twin girls that are 3 years old. She's taught Fit4Baby pre-natal, Stroller Strides and is now our resident Stroller Barre instructor. She has a positive attitude, fun class style, and loves to make her clients feel the Stroller Barre burn!
- Why did you decide to become a FIT4MOM instructor? FIT4MOM combines all of my...
Lesley is the owner of FIT4MOM Glen Ellyn/Wheaton/Lombard, which makes her the founding (and most active!) member of Our Village.
Learn a little bit about her and why she started FIT4MOM in this area. (Spoiler alert: she needed us as much as we need her!)
Tell us a little bit about you and your family.
My husband Matt and I have two daughters, Cecilia (Cici) who’s 4, and Abby who turns 3 this year.
I’m nine months pregnant with my second daughter, and I’m still attending Stroller Strides every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
While my “Fast Feet” may be more like “Slow Steps,” and while my jog may be more like a waddle, I’m there. Here are five reasons why.
- The support. At every class since I’ve announced my pregnancy, at least one fellow mom has asked me how I’m feeling. During the first trimester, my...
To My Dad and My Husband (and all of those that Show Up When it Counts) on Father’s Day
A lot of people say that a woman chooses a husband a lot like her Dad.
On the surface, that’s not true for me. My hubby and my Dad are very different. While my husband is more reserved and serious, my Dad is a goofball at heart who loves to chat.
On the deeper side though, it’s absolutely true. It’s a little hard for me to put into...more
Mother’s Day is coming up. Here’s my wish for my own Mom, and by proxy, all of you. Mom, if you’re reading this (which I’m sure you will be at some point), I love you. And I mean every word. And I’m crying already.
My mom has told me on a few different occasions (maybe more than a few) that she wants my life to...more
After a particularly tough time in my life (pre-kids), I wanted to step outside of my comfort zone. I made a vow to myself: I could not say no to anything, unless it would harm myself or others.
A broad and somewhat ridiculous vow, I know, but it helped me in a huge way: I could not make excuses when it came to trying new things and experiences.
The proverbial push really came to shove when my friend Kristy (perhaps preying on my...more
For those of you that know me well, know that I am on Facebook A LOT! I post class pictures, class updates, pictures of my family, and more.
I know so many of us are on Facebook, so it is an easy “one stop shop” to update everyone on what’s going on with Our Village. I also think it is useful for sharing updates with far away friends and family.
But one thing most people don’t talk about with Facebook is how much time it takes....more
Since my husband and I are both from the great state of New Jersey, I have a lot of mommy friends that live there. Last week, one of my friends from NJ came to visit her husband’s family, who just happen to live in this area (a happy coincidence). She’s a member of the FIT4MOM franchise where she lives, so she came to one of our classes here.
I enjoyed having her visit so much! It was fun to introduce an “old” mommy friend to the “new”...more
Meet our new instructor Emily Kurtz! Emily will be teaching our Body Back BOOST classes on Monday nights at Saturday mornings! Check out her schedule here.
Tell us something we don't know about you: I have an amazing memory recall on insignificant details of pop culture. If you need to know what happened on an episode of 90210 in 1995, I'm your girl....more
What Stroller Fitness Classes are Really Like: A Comparison of My Expectations vs. Reality
If you’ve never tried a Stroller Strides or Stroller Barre class, you might be wondering what it’s like.
If you’re like me before I joined FIT4MOM, it’s probably not what you’d expect. Here’s a little comparison of what I thought stroller fitness would be, versus what it actually has been for me.
My daughter is a newly minted toddler—she just turned 15 months. But I’ve got some (limited) broader experience with toddlers thanks to my friends at Stroller Strides. And let me tell you something: I think they have this whole “life” thing down pat.
Sure, they may need help putting shoes on or going to the bathroom. Sure, they may throw tantrums over having to wear clothes. But when it comes to what matters—enjoying life—they are top...more
I’ve noticed something over the past year since I’ve had my daughter: my closest mom friends are way nicer to me than they are to themselves. And I’m included in that group. I’m way nicer to others than I am to myself.
Here’s a silly example.
One Friday afternoon in August, I locked myself out of my house while my daughter was napping. I was so angry at myself for being careless—my inner dialog was full of curses and insults...more
Lesley Lehman and Erica Spear both attended the FIT4MOM conference in San Diego, CA last month. A lot of people have been asking about their trip, so we thought we’d do a little blog recap.
Lesley and Erica both got to learn a ton of new stuff at the conference from fitness professionals across the country. And they’re going to bring it all back to our Village!
They’ve got new exercises and cardio bursts, new ways to use the...more
According to Facebook Memories, today (October 20) is the first anniversary of my first-ever Stroller Strides class.
In honor of this occasion, here are 5 things that would happen if I didn’t have FIT4MOM and Our Village in my life.
1) I wouldn’t be able to carry groceries, my daughter, a diaper bag, and the mail into my house at the same time. My arms, shoulders and back are definitely stronger because of flys...more
The Joy of No Judgement
My first event with FIT4MOM was a Mom’s Night Out, before I even became a Mom. We had just moved to Wheaton, and I was 9 months pregnant. I found FIT4MOM on Meetup.com, and decided to try an MNO.
While driving there, I was nervous. If you believe what you read on the Internet, Mom’s groups are havens for cattiness and judgement. (And if it’s on the Internet, it must be true.) Was I wearing...more
I just moved this summer. I’ve actually moved six times since 2007, including twice across an ocean.
And you know what I realized?
I’ve dragged a lot of crap across an ocean. Twice.
Clothes were the main culprit. I had so many clothes. Every time I looked in my closet, I’d get stressed out. I had the same problem many women do—so many clothes, but nothing to wear.
There were clothes that were too big. Clothes that...more
Why I Stride: The Backstory of My Relationship with Exercise
I’m Christina Ousouljoglou, and I’ll be blogging for FIT4MOM about twice per month. I live in Wheaton, IL with my husband and our 11 month old daughter.
I plan to write about fun topics. If you know me, you know that I survive the not-so glamorous moments of motherhood, wifehood, and work with large doses of laughter and light-hearted sarcasm....more
Wow! Your amazing body is making a little person. Exercising while you are pregnant has so many benefits. Most important one is that it gets your body ready for the next step, all the heavy lifting you will be doing once your bundle of joy is in your life. The stronger and healthier you are during your pregnancy, the easier it will be during labor, recovery and all the ups and downs that comes with adding a new little person to your...more
What a FUN playgroup! On Wednesday August 13th the FIT4MOM Glen Ellyn & Wheaton Stroller Strides classes had a combined playgroup at the Glen Ellyn Fire station. We had over 15 Stroller Strides mamas come to our playgroup and a few friends from the Lombard area moms Meetup!
Fire Chief Steve talked to us about fire safety and what to do in an emergency. Fireman Mike dressed up in his gear to show the children what a fireman would...more