Tag Archives: Fitness

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Progress & Priorities

screen-shot-2018-06-05-at-2-54-31-pmBefore: 180 lbs.

Current: 129 lbs.

The last time I stepped on the scale before giving birth to my daughter, I weighed 180 pounds and stood in awe.

I’d happily gained what I referred to as “love weight” after meeting my husband, an incredible cook whose food I loved to eat. But after a year and a half, I couldn’t fit into any of my pants and had resorted to flowy tops with leggings or dresses to hide what was underneath. It was time to get back in shape, except nothing seemed to work. I was exhausted, craved food I’d never been drawn to and thought age must be the reason my waist was thickening. It never occurred to me I might be pregnant. After all, I was 40 and had been on the pill for years. Thankfully, God had other plans.

Now here I was, hours away from meeting the daughter I’d carried for months, in awe. I had never experienced such love for my own body. I felt strong, beautiful and at peace, all 180 pounds of me…us.

Hours after labor, I cradled Olive in my arms while my husband slept on a cot nearby, grateful tears rolling down my cheeks as I looked at the two most important people in my world.

Less than three weeks after becoming a first-time mother, I was asked the dreaded post-birth question – “When are you due?” – while on a quick solo trip to grab a few items at my neighborhood grocery store. Surely, the stranger had not meant to be rude, so I laughed it off without correcting her, but the comment stung.

When I began to receive unsolicited Facebook messages and texts from people who wanted to help me get my “pre-baby body back,” I was deeply hurt. Well- intended or not, the offers were offensive. This mama was focused on learning how to parent (and finding pockets of time to slip in moments of sleep). What I looked like – what I weighed – was not for others to judge.

Instead of accepting someone else’s perception of me, I marveled at how this body had produced a tiny human and was now responsible for providing her what she needed to thrive. I knew I was, for the first time in my life, clinically obese and resolved to get back in shape when I was ready – not a moment before. Immersing myself in motherhood was the sole priority.

A year later, however, I grew tired of being tired. My joints hurt, my balance was off, and I lacked energy and stamina. I’d lost a little bit of weight without trying, but as a doctor gently pointed out, I was an older mom – 41 the day I gave birth – with a family history of obesity, high blood pressure and diabetes. My health needed to become a priority in my life.

So, I started working with a trainer and following a diet plan. But as soon as I lost a mildly noticeable amount of weight, I’d allow life to intrude, the excuses to flow and give up. I’ll start again Monday, I told myself again and again, sometimes lasting to the weekend but reversing any gains I made in the matter of a few days.

I didn’t feel like a failure; I just didn’t care. I was juggling multiple jobs, and working hard to be a good mom and supportive wife. That was enough, I rationalized. What I looked like did not – does not – define who I am. As someone who decades before had battled anorexia and bulimia for 10 years beginning in the eighth grade, this stance was proof my body image was strong, and I was proud of how I had evolved. But confidence and self-acceptance were not going to make me physically healthy.

I don’t quite know what sparked my resolve to get off the roller coaster of losses, gains and plateaus, but I woke up one Saturday morning ready for a change. Forget waiting for Monday. The time was now. There is no guarantee about longevity of life, but finally I wanted to do everything I could to lead a healthy one.

My method was simple: Reduce portions, know my calories, no skipping meals, eliminate alcohol, drink at least 64 ounces of water and exercise.

I purchased a cooler, prepped all of my meals except breakfast, scheduled workouts on my calendar and set a routine: Wake up, drink 8 ounces of water while packing my meals in my cooler, get ready for the day with my husband and daughter, make a simple breakfast, go to work, eat lunch, eat again four hours later, spend time with my daughter, eat dinner, prep for the next day, eat a snack before 8 p.m. if still hungry, go to bed.

If I had an evening meeting or event to attend, I’d eat beforehand so I wasn’t hungry. When offered a cocktail or some sort of delicious treat, I’d decline, explaining I was on a mission to get fit.

When life threatened to get overwhelming because of work duties related to coverage of the Kentucky Derby and my husband’s campaign for Floyd County Commissioner, I researched a local meal service called MacroMan and started ordering freshly-made meals from them to supplement what I was preparing.

As my clothes began to get looser, my motivation, energy and productivity strengthened. Sure, it felt good to have my waist back and zip up a dress I hadn’t been able to wear for the better part of three years, but what I valued most was my decreased anxiety, calmer approach to stressors and mental sharpness. I called it “getting my groove back,” though it was nothing more than setting a goal of getting healthier and – finally – proving to myself I could do it.

I’ve lost more than 50 pounds since my all-time high of 180. My goal now is to lose more body fat, gain muscle mass and continue increasing the strength of my heart and lungs through exercise.

These days, when I feel my motivation waning, I take a moment to stand in awe and remind myself I’m worth being a priority.

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Tried & Tested

screen-shot-2018-06-05-at-3-00-23-pmBy Angie Fenton

I AM IN NO WAY AN EXPERT WHEN IT COMES TO HEALTH AND ALWAYS RECOMMEND CONSULTING WITH A MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL BEFORE EMBARKING ON AN EXERCISE AND DIET PLAN, BUT HERE ARE SOME TIPS THAT HAVE WORKED FOR ME.

DO YOUR HOMEWORK

Thanks to the internet, I’ve found a zillion healthy, simple ways to cook chicken and make my own dressings for salads. There are also numerous Facebook pages dedicated to healthy eating. I often take screenshots of recipes – the easier the better – and save them in a photo folder on my phone. Then, when I’m ready to go grocery shopping, I write down exactly what I need so I’m not wandering aimlessly. Whatever you do, be sure you do your homework before you commit to getting fit.

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Prepping meals takes some time, but it has been worth it. While I don’t force myself to eat if I’m not hungry, I think of my body like a furnace: You’ve got to keep the fires stoked if you want them to burn. Although I prepare most of my food, I also make purchases from MacroMan – MacroManMeals.com – a locally-owned meal prep service that has dishes for every taste. The food is delicious and has helped immensely when I need something to grab and go and don’t have time to figure out proportions or calorie counts.

DON’T CHEAT – TREAT

Even though I slip and still use the terms “cheat meal” or “cheat day” on occasion, I loathe the negative connotations. I also finally had to admit a “cheat moment” for me often became a “cheat month” or more, so I don’t allow myself to have them in the same way I used to. For example, instead of eating pizza, I treat myself to a healthy-ish dinner of, say, steak, something I don’t eat on a regular basis. Or, in place of ice cream, I’ll have low-fat frozen yogurt. The treats (usually) suffice and I don’t feel it necessary to full-on cheat. On the rare occasions when I have resorted to eating unhealthy foods, I start again on my journey the next day and keep putting one foot in front of the other.

KICK THE COCKTAILS

As much as I love a glass (or three) of wine, alcohol isn’t on my diet plan, and it’s been months since I’ve had a drink. My cocktail of choice now consists of sparkling water, lime juice and a coconut-flavored drink by Bai or club soda, lemon juice and mashed blueberries. I now think of alcohol as unnecessary calories and a trigger to slipping back into old eating habits I’ve worked really hard to break. When I recently considered having just one glass, I grabbed a bottle of water and forced myself to weigh the pros (there weren’t any) and cons (there were many). I may indulge in the future, but for the present time, it’s not for me.

SEARCH FOR SUPPORT

My husband has been a constant source of support, which is helpful, and I have a few friends I reach out to as well. I also occasionally share tidbits of my journey on social media. Accountability is important to success. Search for support in whatever way works for you.

MOVE IT

You don’t have to join a gym in order to exercise, although being a member of one can help with accountability. I have a number of friends who swear by Four Barrel CrossFit (you get a workout and a great community of supporters), love Planet Fitness (clean and open 24-7), thrive on personal trainers that come to your home (Ryan Schrink of Schrink Personal Training is THE best) and, for the ladies, have had big success at B.You. I belong to a gym and also exercise at home. Some days that means going for a walk or dancing to the “Trolls” soundtrack with my 2-year-old. Whatever you do, get moving and regularly.

Photo by Jenny Branson

When Politics Get Personal (And Getting Fit Turns Political)

Photo by Jenny Branson

Photo by Jenny Branson

By Angie Fenton

This is not a political column.

That needs to be said upfront.

I grew up in a household where

talking about politics was rarely, if

ever, a topic discussed out loud, and

I am still more comfortable listening

to political views as opposed to

divulging my own and engaging in

political talk. I often feel like that’s a

rarity – I mean, listening to someone

else’s opinion instead of exclaiming

my own – though if I said as much

on Facebook or Twitter, I’m sure

someone would attempt to shame

me for saying that, but whatever.

My husband, Jason Applegate,

spent e ight (long) months

researching a passion he’s held for

a very long time. Then, he officially

declared he is running for Floyd

County Commissioner. I fully

support him but am just that: his

support. Still, this is not a column

about him or politics (though I do

encourage you, wherever you’re

located and regardless of your

political affiliation, to exercise your

right to vote…and if I’m called to talk

politics, well, just know I’ve spent a

lifetime of listening and am ready to

stand up and speak if necessary).

But this is a column I wrote for

the now-tabled Extol Sports, Extol

Magazine’s sister publication, and

it is and will remain a column about

getting fit as it was in the other

publication. So…

What I didn’t realize until Jason’s

candidacy began was the role his

campaign would take in terms of

how we approach getting fit as a

family, which has been the focus of

this column since it first debuted in

Extol Sports, our (again) now-tabled

sister publication, in January 2017.

Suddenly , si n c e Jas on’s

announcement, work and life

responsibilities have included a

schedule requiring advanced

planning as well as a family

commitment to fitness and fun.

While social media and print, radio,

digital and television options to

spread the campaign word are vital,

nothing is more effective than inperson

interactions. And that means

hitting the streets on foot.

Over the past several weeks, we’ve

really benefited because family

walks – which include our 2-yearold

– have become a priority. So,

too, has meal planning. Stamina

and endurance are imperative on

this journey, and carving out time

together is important as well, now

more than ever.

Instead of flying into the start

of a new week without thinking

beyond Monday, we’ve made it a

point to plan out the week’s meals

and preparing what we can ahead of

time. We have to. That saves money,

of course, and also forces us to think

about what we’re putting into our

bodies. Garbage in, garbage out is a

cliche of the past, but when you make

it a point to ingest food intended to

fuel your body, you feel better. We

are proof of that.

While in the past it has been easy

to end the day by sitting on the couch

and watching yet another episode of

“Sesame Street” before our tot goes

to sleep and then staying up way too

late working on our computers, Jason

By Angie Fenton

and I have a newfound commitment

to getting outside before dinner

(weather permitting), walking our

four dogs with our young one and

talking about anything but work.

It’s funny how much happier that’s

made us. It’s wonderful how much

healthier it’s making us, physically,

spiritually and emotionally.

We still fail and falter. That’s just

life. We also refuse to give up.

This mama built a body who

has become an amazing little

person. And I’m still committed to

competing in another bodybuilder

competition one day soon like I did

years ago.

For now, though, I’m going to walk

and support those I love and have

fun with my family while focusing

not on politics but on this journey

we’re fortunate to call life.

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CrossFit Open Qualifier

March 6 • Four Barrel CrossFit in New Albany

Photos by Christian Watson

Four Barrel CrossFit, which is owned by Case Belcher,

hosted a CrossFit Open Qualifier for the worldwide CrossFit

Games competition.

The Kula Center Opens, Welcomes Everyone

One-stop shop for holistic medicine and wellness opens in New Albany

By Lisa Hornung | Photos by Christian Watson

New Albany now has its own one-stop shop

for holistic medicine and wellness in The Kula

Center, 802 E. Market St.

Kula – which means community, clan or tribe – is

a fitting name for the center, which creates a tribe

of businesses serving the New Albany community.

Owner Carrie Klaus has owned and operated

Inner Spring Yoga in New Albany and Jeffersonville

for five years, and now she and her husband Rob

have opened this new space.

The couple live just a few blocks from the center,

and when they were out walking one evening,

Rob said to Carrie, “That would be a great place

for a yoga studio.” The two wanted to buy a place

instead of renting so they could gain some equity.

They moved Inner Spring’s New Albany location

to the Kula Center and opened up the center to

other businesses in the holistic health industry.

Businesses in the center include Dailey Wellness

and Massage, which offers massage, reiki, cupping,

kinesio tape and more; Integrating Healthy Habits,

a nutrition coaching service; and the Sukhino

Float Center, which will offer floatation in saltwater

pods. Sukhino will open in June. Inner Spring Jeffersonville is still open at 335 Spring St.

The Kula Center came about because Carrie

Klaus wanted to create an opportunity for people

who are interested in health and wellness and

work in the same location. “We’ve all kind of

got that same energy and that same vibe, and

we’re all working toward that same goal with our

businesses at the Kula Center.”

Carrie Klaus is also running for the New Albany

Township Advisory Board. After the 2016 election,

she began to get more politically involved and

started paying attention to ways to be more active.

“This kind of fit me because what I would be able

to do on the advisory board is offer assistance to

our lower-income community members,” Carrie

Klaus said, “and that really ties in with the mission

of Inner Spring yoga and with the ultimate goal

of the Kula Center, which is to make sure that the

Kula Center is open and welcoming to everyone

in the community.”

Carrie Klaus has been a yoga instructor for 12

years and opened Inner Spring about five years

ago. She mentioned one day to her husband that

she might like to open her own place. “And my

husband is one of those great kind of husbands

who like to make dreams come true,” she said,

“and he came home one day and said I rented

you a space to open up a yoga studio.”

She ran the business for a couple of years while

homeschooling her children. Now their daughters,

ages 14 and 11, are in school, and she runs both

Inner Spring and the Kula Center. “He has a fulltime

job and two part-time jobs,” she said of Rob

Klaus, who manages all the finances and payroll

of the businesses on top of his full-time job.

Carrie Klaus said she wants the Kula Center to

be a hub where everyone can have their health

and wellness needs met.

“We do realize that cost can be an issue for

some people in taking advantage of some of those

health and wellness practices,” she said.

Health insurance doesn’t cover holistic and

preventive care, such as yoga and acupuncture.

So, visitors have to pay out of pocket.

“We realize that’s just not possible for some

people in our community,” said Carrie Klaus.

“So, our ultimate goal is for each person in our

community to be served in some way by us.”

For more information on the Kula Center and

its businesses, visit www.thekulacenter.com.

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Louisville Hosts Red-White Baseball Scrimmage

Photos by Christian Watson

Feb. 9

The University of Louisville baseball team opened its final

weekend of preseason work with a Red-White scrimmage

Feb. at Jim Patterson Stadium. Gates opened at 1 p.m. for

batting practice and admission was free for the scrimmage.

Louisville opened the 2018 season on Feb. 16 at against

Richmond in the first of three games at the Charleston Crab

House Challenge in Charleston, South Carolina. The Cardinals

also played The Citadel on Feb. 17 and George Mason on

Feb. 18. The 2018 home-opener at Jim Patterson Stadium

occurred Feb. 21 against Eastern Kentucky.

Fans can follow Louisville baseball on Twitter (@

UofLBaseball) and on Facebook (@ulbaseball).

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B.YOU: Building a Better You

Story by Steve Kaufman  |  Photography by Steve Squall | Photography Assistance Provided By Shepherd Ahlers

B.YOU her modern fitness boutique coming to New Albany, lifts people off the ground, literally and figuratively. 

There always seems to be something new in the world of fitness, but B.YOU Her Modern Fitness Boutique is here to stay and offers participants far more than a way to get fit.

Remember aerobics? Which gave way to yoga, which gave way to kick-boxing, which gave way to Jazzercise. Then there was Pilates. And spinning. And CrossFit. And Zumba.

It’s not just fashion or trendiness. Each seems to be a new and different way to build on what we’ve learned about conditioning, health and the human body.

But something new has come to the Southern Indiana area – by way of B.YOU, which is opening its first location on Pearl Street in New Albany – though it’s already quite popular in European and East Coast cities. It’s the same intense, well-crafted workout, only it’s done not on the ground, not on a mat, not reclining or sitting or squatting, not lotus pose or downward-facing dog, but in the air.

Actually, it’s not an “it” – it’s a “they.” Two separate types of workouts (though they offer far more than that). One is done while twirling and rotating in the air, using a long sash – a silque – suspended from the ceiling. Think Cirque du Soleil.

The other is done while bouncing up and down on a rebounding platform. Think trampoline.

The local pioneer of all this is Stephanie Bristow, a former ICU trauma nurse who just wanted to get in shape for her wedding. In a Lexington fitness studio in 2010, she discovered barre, the rave of the moment: stretching and toning using a ballet dancer’s simple flexibility routine. Two years later, Bristow moved to Louisville and opened a barre studio in St. Matthews.

“I fell in love with barre,” Bristow recalled. “It was challenging and low-impact, without any equipment. I saw a lot of changes in my body and felt challenged physically and mentally.”

Among the things Bristow liked was how barre addressed her particular gender needs. “I targeted what was important to me, to most women – my inner thighs and arms – with a lot of repetition and with stretching, so it didn’t bulk up my muscles.”

She found it safe and low-impact enough for women of all ages. And, most important perhaps, it was a welcoming, comfortable environment for women, away from the sweaty, muscular, masculine feel of so many gyms.

“At (the barre studio), it was the men who tended to feel out of place,” Bristow recalled. “Even the men who delivered the mail were uncomfortable.”

Eventually, the studio became so popular that Bristow and her partner, a fellow barre enthusiast named Rashna Carmicle, had opened a second location in Springhurst in Louisville. But they were already looking past barre to other things.

On a trip to the New York area, Bristow and Carmicle visited a facility in New Jersey called AntiGravity Yoga. Participants twirled off the ground, hammocked in a sash of material suspended from the ceiling by safety chains and carabiner shackles that gave them elements of calisthenics and also yoga, achieving a total-body workout.

Bristow was fascinated. But she wasn’t satisfied. “I didn’t like the way the class was created,” she said. “We wanted a more full-body approach, to burn calories but also strengthen the core. So we developed our own approach, a set of targeted exercises so you’re not just flipping around.”

The two barre studios were renamed B.YOU Modern Fitness Boutique. Recently, a third location was scouted in the bustling New Albany/Southern Indiana area.

And Bristow began looking for yet something more. On a trip to New York, she and Carmicle discovered a workout routine based on a mini-trampoline. “It was amazing,” Bristow said. “Sixty minutes of high-energy, adrenaline-packed fun. We’d never done this before, and there’s nothing like it in this area.”

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So now, B.YOU offers three workout alternatives:

Barre fitness, using a ballet barre and light hand weights to lengthen and tone muscles through tiny movements and isolated holds, with two-, three- and five-pound weights. “There’s not a wide range of motion exercises,” said Brooke Vernon, one of B.You’s instructors (who are actually called “inspirers”), “it’s all precisely controlled.”

Aerial fitness, in which clients are enveloped in and suspended by silque hammocks. “You use your own body weight to build strength, length and muscle,” she said, “transforming your physique, head-to-toe.”

Trampoline fitness, incorporating the individual mini-rebounders along with hand-weights, to firm and tone muscle, improve balance and core strength, “all while being kind to our joints,” she said. “The rebounders absorb up to 80 percent of the shock to joints, versus that which you feel on roads, treadmills, running tracks and other hard surfaces.” Also, she said, it’s a low bounce that utilizes the body’s core and pelvis to lift your feet off the ground. The goal is to stay low. “Forget what you think you know about those big backyard trampolines, with a lot of aimless bouncing and jumping. This is very controlled, very targeted.”

Within the three methods are several different classes, Vernon said: cardio, sculpting, high-intensity interval training, stretching, yoga/meditation.

“The goal is a well-rounded repertoire of fitness levels and classes,” Bristow said. “We want to offer everything anyone needs at one location, so she doesn’t have to have five gym memberships. And we now feel we have that great, well-rounded, complimentary offering, three workout options that balance each other out.”

For example, she said, barre and silque are a great complement to one-another for full-body sculpting. “And, with the bounce, we now offer a great cardio workout, as well. We looked into spinning and treadmills, but we didn’t feel those things fit our studio environment. The rebounder seems perfect for us.

“The rebounder adds exercise science to our offering. It’s popular in physical therapy classes because it’s so good for your joints.”

A big part of B.YOU’s special sauce is its focus on women.

What’s important to women?” asked Vernon, a former cardiac nurse and self-described marathon runner and cardio junkie. “Safety. Effectiveness. Results. How fast are they seeing results? How much time are they having to spend before they see changes? Is there the potential for an residual injuries?”

It’s also aiming its service at all levels of fitness, age, physical acuity and objectives. “We have women in their 60s, women who are pregnant, women who are in fantastic shape and women who would like to get into challenge is always the fear of intimidation – that you’re not good at it and everyone else in the room is. That’s especially true with methods as new and unfamiliar as ours are. You might go to our web site and the aerial silques look terrifying, everyone up in the air, flying around.b-u

“That’s not what we want. We have beginner-level classes and we help people advance at their own pace. We don’t want to be forcing anyone to do something, to advance beyond her comfort level. Our approach is to ask, ‘What do you do for exercise?’ If you say you don’t have the time, we say ‘Give us 60 minutes of your time and we’ll give you an escape.’ ”

While the boutiques are open seven days a week, most members are encouraged to work out only three or four days a week. “Within that time, switch up your classes so you’re varying your routine, so every workout every day is not the same,” said Bristow.

In fact, she said, “if you’re doing a strength workout, we encourage you to put 24 or 48 hours between those, to let your muscles rest. Take a cardio class in between to keep the blood flowing and relieve muscle soreness.”

B.YOU is currently in the midst of preparing the space for the third location at 302 Pearl St. in New Albany. Vernon believes it once was a Walgreen’s.

The 2,675-square-foot fitness studio will have shower facilities, a changing area, vanities and a boutique retail space.

The owners felt Southern Indiana was a natural location for another B.YOU location. There’s a growing community of interested consumers there and, in fact, Bristow said she was seeing an increase in the number of Indiana residents who came to the two Louisville locations. In October, said Vernon, B.YOU took space at New Albany’s annual Harvest Homecoming, with a portable barre device in the booth and a small trampoline on the sidewalk.

“It was amazing how much interest and excitement there was for this,” she said.

Vernon said there will likely be a soft opening some time in December. B.YOU will offer a special “founding membership” of $79 a month for unlimited use of the facility. “That’s locked in; it will never change,” she said. The membership will come with free child care, priority on all wait lists and 15 percent off all retail purchases. B.YOU has a small boutique inside, selling workout apparel from some of the top fitness brands, including Karma, Alo, Beyond Yoga, Shashi. Vernon said the post-founding membership rates have yet to be determined, but in the two Louisville locations, the going rate is $138 a month. Bristow is excited about the way her business is progressing. “There are other barres,” she said dismissively of the exercising phenomenon that, after all, hasn’t been the rage for two or three years, “but nobody else in has the silques or the rebounders.”

While the official New Albany opening is being pegged for January, Vernon said there will likely be a soft opening some time in December. B.YOU will offer a special “founding membership” of $79 a month for unlimited use of the facility. “That’s locked in; it will never change,” she said.

The membership will come with free child care, priority on all wait lists and 15 percent off all retail purchases. B.YOU has a small boutique inside, selling workout apparel from some of the top fitness brands, including Karma, Alo, Beyond Yoga, Shashi.

Vernon said the post-founding membership rates have yet to be determined, but in the two Louisville locations, the going rate is $138 a month.

Bristow is excited about the way her business is progressing. “There are other barres,” she said dismissively of the exercising phenomenon that, after all, hasn’t been the rage for two or three years, “but nobody else in has the silques or the rebounders.”

B.YOU Her Modern Fitness Boutique

302 Pearl St.

New Albany

812.302.2348

byoufitness.com

newalbany@byoufitness.com