GraceFULL – With Older Kiddos

What does grace look like as your kids get older? It looks like real tough, real honest, real life. Check out what this awesome PowerFull Fitness mom shares about life with teenagers and how to find grace.

Being graceFULL. This is something I have strived to be with others my whole life. But I am rarely if ever graceFULL with myself. Powerfull Fitness is one of the most grace-filled gifts I have ever given myself and I am GRATEful for it every day. Because so many days lately are filled with tears about how I have failed as a parent (nothing brings you to your knees faster than the scorn of a teenage girl. While I strive to be a fairly cool, or at least not an embarrassing mom, teenage girls will let you know just how cool you are NOT.) And tears about my oldest leaving for college in a hot second. Or tears about how my life isn’t really how I thought it would be before I realized just how dang hard life is. Continue Reading →

To My Kid’s Teacher: Let’s Get Real Ladies

Our PF Instructor Amanda breaks it down for us.  The good, the bad, the ugly of the first week of school.

“One week down, 30+ to go.  I won’t lie, I was super excited to send the kids off to school this year.  #3 started Kindergarten and was more than ready to join her sisters as a full time student.  #2 is super social and was craving interaction with friends other than her siblings and #1 likes the structure and routine of school and had had enough of her littlest sister.  The first day drop off went well, pick up for #2 and #3 was great. #1 got off the bus in tears. A first. That pattern continued for the week.

On day 3 her teacher sent parents a “homework” sheet asking us more about our kids.  One of the question was “What do you think I should know about your child?” Intellectually, I understand that she was simply asking for some basic info on my child that would make her life easier. However, after a week of silent tears at drop off and death grip hugs at pick up, emotionally I just wanted to lay it all out for her.  What do I want you to know? I want you to know she is amazing. She is the best thing I have ever done in my life. She is strange and beautiful. She likes her hair parted down the middle, and her pants pulled up to her belly button. She hates ankle socks, and loves macaroni. She is the oldest 9 year old I know and has never met a cardigan she doesn’t like.  She is quiet and brave. Her real laugh is spectacular and saved for things that are truly funny. She is cautious but adventurous. She worries about random things and hates to be critiqued. She loves to be by herself and finds social situations draining. She is creative and bossy. She loves to dance when no one is watching and has recently perfected the eye roll.  She is a quiet leader not the steamroller her younger sister is. She is stronger than her skin and bone frame suggests and cannot say no to ice-cream. She changed my life and is one of the most precious things in my world. And every day this week I have dried her tears and sent her off to be with you and 23 other kids in a trailer at the back of the school because that is what I am suppose to do: to tell her she is brave, and that things are going to work out, and remind her that she does actually love school and her friends when all I really want to do is take her home or somehow miraculously absorb all her fears and anxiety and carry the weight for her.   Continue Reading →

GraceFULL – A Military Perspective

We’ve had so many strong moms come through classes at PowerFull Fitness. So many of our ladies have personal stories and hardships that they share with our community that inspire us, encourarage and motivate us.  Their stories help us know what real life looks like and what giving ourselves grace can be.  The more we share Grace, the more we can receive it.  Let’s get real together ladies.  Let’s share what is really happening.   This blog is from a PowerFull Fitness mom who shares with us what “GraceFULL” looks like on a daily basis during a year long deployment.

The news that my husband was deploying for a year was devastating. After two years of unrelenting TDYs, we had been looking forward to a quiet job. I had envisioned family dinners every night, no missed birthdays, and sitting side by side at the kids’ school performances…basically, living the DREAM! I mourned the loss of that imaginary life HARD. I had barely been treading water with his crazy travel schedule, and deployment felt as though someone had
thrown me a rock instead of a life preserver. Continue Reading →

ResourceFULL – Summer Staycation

One of our awesome PowerFull Fitness moms gets pretty ResourceFULL during her summer break with kiddos. I thought this was too good  to keep secret so here are some tips she shared with our PF members.

Summer Staycation- Fun for Procrastinators
-Janis Reyes

I am a full-time attorney with two kids, and I am also procrastinator. While I have friends who plan their summer in February, I always plan my summers late because I’m really busy and it is so daunting to schedule it all.  I normally schedule a week in California to be with my family, and then try to take it easy and have a Summer Staycation. The DMV area is full of fun free festivals and events, take advantage of it all!

1) Camps- There are still lots of camps available at this late date:

  • Vacation Bible Camps  – Here is a link to look up some if you area!
  • Fairfax Recreation has a ton of great and available camps at nearby schools:  Rec Pac- Only $120 a week! 8:30am-3:30 pm.  Check out the sessions here!
  • Parktakes- Fairfax County still has openings for camps of all types, half day and full day.  They have before care (start at 7am or 8am) and after care (4-6pm).  The cost ranges around $200-$400 a week.  My kids have taken Junior Rocs, Basketball Camp, Girls Games Camp, Circus Camp, Puppet Camp, etc. My friend even offers Ninja Warrior Camp through Parktakes.  Check out some options here!

2)  My husband subscribes to e-mails of events, and adds them to the calendar on weekends as options for fun. I also check these out to go on my days off. We have gone to the Smithsonian Folklife Festival, strawberry festivals, food truck events, outdoor movie nights, etc.

Some of the ones you can check out:

3) We often bring our kids to places we want to go- a brewery or a winery. I bring a picnic basket full of snacks, and enjoy an afternoon while the kids run around.

  • Fair Winds has food trucks!
  • Vanish Beer has flavored beers + great for relaxing!
  • Paradise Springs Winery has great space for running around.
  • Other options to check out Potomac Winery with a kids room with toys, Barrel Oak is dog friendly, and Stone Tower Winery has a space outside for kids to run around.

4) Finally, check out some local food markets and food factory tours.

Self Care for Care Givers

Today I am honored to have a guest writer for our blog, Christina Schultz, MA. Christina worked with our group a while back as we focused on relationships and offered an awesome marriage seminar. I reached back out to her for her advice on being “restored” since that is our focus this month.

When I mentioned to her our theme, she specifically said that when she thinks of “restoration” for women, she thinks of self-care and creating boundaries. The article she has provided for us today encourages us to dig deep as we think about our roles as care givers.

Christina says, ‘For any women attempting to balance role demands of parenting, work, care giving, marriage, and relationships with family-of-origin – self-care and boundaries are your key to balanced living. A whole self-care plan needs to integrate the four aspects of you – which includes physical, emotional, social, and spiritual health.”

She didn’t stop there though! She has provided us with a 7 Step Process for creating that self-care plan. Get ready to reflect and be restored as you work through this plan with her.

Check it out here.

If you have more questions or want more information from Christina, she is an awesome resource.

Click here to contact her directly.

As always, thanks to Christina for spending time providing us with awesome resources.

Rest easy my friends.

A Runner’s Highs…and Lows

One thing I love about our diverse team of instructors is the expertise each one brings to the table. We have running coaches, piyo pros, nutrition and health specialists, and even senior fitness experts. We have it all.  Today, I wanted to bring you some more insight from my own personal running coach, Tristan.  Tristan is not only a group exercise instructor for us but she also is a Certified Running Coach and she actually just coached me to prep me for a 10 mile race.  I really didn’t think I could run 10 miles but she got me there.  However…this article she writes…well she MAY be writing about me (ok she is). As much as I loved training, there were definitely some self – realizations during the journey.  I shared them with Tristan as I was prepping and she wrote this article.  I’ll be doing my own reflections on the blog too but I wanted to share her thoughts on keeping your FITness Routine FESTIVE.

Check out Tristan’s thoughts that may or may have not been triggered by my personal grumbling…

‘Tis the season for fall races and many of the ladies that I’ve been coaching are SO close to reaching that race day goal. Whether it’s a 5K, 10 miles, a half marathon or even a full 26.2, these ladies have been working hard on their plan for the past few months. It’s an exciting time! Some of these ladies are pushing to reach a distance goal that’s new to them. They are aiming to run the furthest that they’ve ever gone. Amazing, right? They have changed their fitness routines over the past few months to ensure that they can be successful on race day. For many, that means carving out time, sometimes a couple hours or more, to get a long run in once a week in addition to other runs and cross training. It’s a lot of time and dedication!

Continue Reading →

Why Try Early AM Classes

If you’ve ever wondered why our Early AM classes are so popular..here’s why!  We’d love to have you join us too. Thanks Melanie for sharing your thoughts on why Early Am classes work for you!

“This morning reminded me again of why I love PowerFull Fitness. It’s the first day back to school after Spring Break, and it’s so tempting to sleep in after all the fun of the past week. But I know that one of my workout buddies will be stopping by to pick me up soon at 4:55 am so that we can go to Kickboxing at 5:15am with Erin at Toys R Us parking lot. The accountability is key for me and getting a workout in by 6 am is such a great start to my day.

I am a night owl, so getting up early is not my favorite, but to know that I can get time in for me to workout is everything. It also helps my mornings run smoother. I feel great and I’m awake, and ready to take on my kiddos to get them going for the day. As a working mom of 4 awesome kiddos, I love the early morning classes each weekday. PowerFull Fitness has a well planned mix of workouts with something different each morning to get cardio and strength training – Piyo Tone, Kickboxing, Strength and Tone, Bootcamp and Barre Bell, and more than one early morning class on some days too!

I started over a year ago, and did not even know what a burpee was (for real), and now I do them all the time. What’s great is that Laura, Amanda and the other instructors have been very encouraging to me and provide modifications throughout the workouts for us to choose if we need them. And the early morning workout crew is the best – a great bunch of strong, supportive and awesome women that challenge me each day, and that I’m blessed to know. I could go on and on, but if you’ve been looking to get back into working out or to try something new, I highly recommend giving PowerFull Fitness a try!”