Are you suffering from exercise addiction?

In most cases, exercise is a healthy activity. But just like anything, too much of something can be a bad thing and can lead to extreme or dangerous conditions if one isn't too careful. One can get addicted to exercise. This one hits home for me because I feel that there was a time in my fitness journey where I experienced a brief period of exercise addiction. For me it was around the time I was trying to maintain an "off-season" bikini competitor body. At the time I didn't realize I was on the road to burn out, but by the end of 2015 my body did and minor injuries began to be an area I needed to be better about managing. 

Here are 7 signs that might tell you to cut back just a little bit: 

1. Exercise leaves you exhausted rather than energized. The right amount of physical activity gets your blood and endorphins going. It gives you that rush you need to get through your day. However if you feel the opposite after finishing a workout, it might be a size that you'e overdone it or you need to revisit your exercise routine and scale back a little.

2. You get sick too easily or it takes a long time to recover from a common cold. When you strength train you are essentially tearing muscle fibers and your body is an incredible bio-machine that repairs it on its own. This is how your muscle grows. The anabolic process of muscle growth requires a lot from your internal system. Over-exercising can lead to a break down in the immunity system. 

3. You're irritable or extremely moody. When hangry goes beyond the time frame when you're needing food and the little things seem to set you off regularly. I've been there and man does it suck! I remember being there during the times I competed and had a terrible coach who had me on a very demanding exercise routine that didn't have enough planned out for rest and proper fuel. Sadly, I had plenty of fights with my husband over the smallest things during this time.

4. You can't seem to ever get enough sleep or you're always tired. I know we joke around in this society that we're always tired, mostly because work/life balance in America is such a struggle to find. But if you're getting adequate amounts of sleep, between 7-8 hours a night for an adult, and you're still waking up struggling, you may want to check to see if you're overdoing your burpees and jump squats. 

5. You have "hungover legs" for days at a time. Heavy legs is a sign of fatigue. If you feel as if your legs are just dead weight and you can't move with ease, it might be a sign that your muscles haven't had enough time to fully recover. 

6. You are sore for more than 2-3 days at a time. Oh the DOMS. Delayed onset muscle soreness isn't a terrible thing. But when you've done all the things you need to do to help the muscles recovery such as foam rolling, manual release therapy, and an epsom salt bath and you're still feeling that way, it can be a sign. 

7. Your workouts become a chore or cause you to have the "blues". PTSD with over-exercise can be a thing, I believe it. I've seen the blues in many different forms with from different people with different experiences. Some people experience the blues after planning a wedding or large event, after completing a 12 week workout program or competition prep, or even on a rest day. Over training has been linked to decreased energy and mood. So make sure that you're scheduling a rest day and honor it, something I'm working on this year.

I'm beyond guilty of getting to the breaking point of exercise addiction and after trying to figure out why, I couldn't pinpoint a particular reason except that I have a strong passion for improving myself. But because of that, I've put my body into a bit of a shock and have caused minor injuries along the way. Although these injuries haven't required any surgery or major periods of rest between exercising, it has resulted in hungover legs, feeling unmotivated to move, and not getting enough sleep. Pre-workout can definitely help push me through another day of training, but its just a band-aid solution.

Since starting nutrition school, I've been learning a lot about holistic healing and thousands of nutrition theories. A few things that continue to stick out to me are ancient healing such as Chinese medicine and repairing the body with natural remedies like bone broth, beef gelatin, and collagen.

For almost a year I've used a different form of muscle/tissue repair supplement called glutamine. Which was working out amazing in the beginning over time I think my body was just over it, so it was time to move on. I recently discovered Vital Proteins and have been intrigued on it since its been gracing my feed left and right from all the fitness accounts I follow. I decided to bite the bullet a month ago and give it a try. Collagen is the main structural protein found in skin and other connective tissue such as your muscles, tendons, and even your digestive system. It also stops producing in our bodies after 25 years old. FUN TIMES! I've been dealing with shoulder and hip joint issues and after a month of using Collagen Peptides by Vital Proteins for a month I've found that along with the mobility exercises I've been having to do from my coach, its been really helping heal my body naturally. I use the Vanilla and Coconut Water Whey, Collagen Peptides, and still on a hunt to find the best way to use Beef Gelatin aside from swapping it out for the cornstarch in my stir fry or throwing it into the Bolognese sauce for the family's dinner.  

I've been pouring my Collagen Peptides into anything I can blend, sip, or shake. The unflavored Collagen Peptides is truly unflavored and can be easily masked in anything you drink. So one of my favorite forms is to actually put it into my coffee in the morning or afternoon. 

As you go into 2017 strong with your heart and intentions set on getting fit and exercising like superman, make sure to be mindful of balance. We all lose sight of it and that's perfectly ok, just keep these 7 things in mind to make sure you're not over doing it. Drop me a comment and let me know if any of these resonate with you.

This post was sponsored by Vital Proteins and I was compensated to write this post, but all the opinions are 100% my own.  

 

Joanne E

I’m a mother of two beautiful daughters and married to a man who completes me. I started my fitness journey as a way to heal my soul and launched my blog in hopes to continue to inspire and empower women to use fitness as a tool to heal depression and find their self worth. I strongly believe that each woman deserves to be in love with herself just as much as her man does. I have an obsession with reusable water bottles, I enjoy action movies, and I’m in love with burpees.

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The one thing I'm terrible at...

Mercury retrograde is finally over! Which means its time to get fueled up and kick start all those brand new and shiny exercise and fitness programs. I remember the first day I started working out. I was both eager and terrified out of my mind. Before my commitment to myself I hadn’t worked out consistently since high school P.E. The secret is, even 3 years later, there are still days I’m terrified out of my mind to workout.

Progress isn’t linear. This is probably a phrase I say over and over again on my Instagram. (a note to self anyone?) I’ve experienced a surgery, injuries, changes in my fitness goals, and major life changes throughout the past several years. And despite knowing that these changes are happening and even living through them, for some odd reason I seem to forget that this affects every thing I put my energy and focus into even fitness.

Often times during these high stress levels of life I run to my exercise as a way to decompress and destress. It’s great for my mental health, but taxing on my body. Because of this I’ve sustained some minor joint injuries from lack of rest. 

Rest is the one thing you NEED to schedule in when starting an exercise program. And its the one thing I’m terrible at.

I cannot stress this enough especially based on my own experience. At the tail end of 2015 I thought it would be a great idea to try to prep for another body building competition, do BBG workouts as my cardio, work a full time 9-5 job that had a 1 hour commute each way, and plan and host meet ups with our SF Bay Area fitness community. Oh did I forget to mention that during this time I also still photographed weddings with my husband and have two kids to raise. Mentally and through Google Cal, I had this all worked out. It felt like a great idea at the time especially since I knew I had done it before. But when I take a step back and reflect on the differences 2015 and 2016 had, I realized that there were things taking up my mental capacity that required more physical energy. Because of this I tore my shoulder at the end of 2015 and I’m having some hip and knee mobility issues. 

So this year I’m going to do better with my rest days and scheduling a FULL COMPLETE rest day each week. Rest is needed so I honor the hard work my body has done for me. There are some things that help me along the way such as Arnica, a homeopathic supplement that aids in muscle soreness and bruising. And something I recently picked up as one of my gym bag essentials in case my knee starts to bother me with box jumps, heavy squats, and SoulCycle. 

backpack by Sol and Selene

backpack by Sol and Selene

I started to use the Dynamover brace by Whole You. It’s a compression sleeve that helps with the support of my knees. A lot of the leg workouts I do involve my hamstrings and quad muscles which become contracted naturally through movement and exercise. The Dynamover helps to elongated those muscles relieving tension and stress. It was designed with a seamless 5 zone design which provides you the right amount of compression and support where you need it most. 

Along with the rest days, I’m trying to commit to more foam rolling while watching TV. Foam rolling is a form of myofascial release and helps to break up the excess fascia around the muscles caused by working out.

Now that you know the biggest thing I’m terrible at, I’d love to hear yours. Comment below.

This post was sponsored by Mirum Shopper and I was compensated to write this post, but all the opinions are 100% my own.  The wonderful folks at Whole You has extended 50% OFF and free shipping using my promo code: GOFITJO. One product and on order per person.  

Joanne E

I’m a mother of two beautiful daughters and married to a man who completes me. I started my fitness journey as a way to heal my soul and launched my blog in hopes to continue to inspire and empower women to use fitness as a tool to heal depression and find their self worth. I strongly believe that each woman deserves to be in love with herself just as much as her man does. I have an obsession with reusable water bottles, I enjoy action movies, and I’m in love with burpees.

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Small Changes to Make in 2017 That Can Impact Your Health For A Lifetime

The New Year always brings forth second chances and new goals to reach in order to better our lives. I’m a goal oriented person and I hate to admit this but a little Type A when it comes to lists, organizing my planner, and notebooks to set me up for success. However, I wasn’t always this way. When I started my career as a people manager at VSCO, I knew that the best way to juggle and manage all my quarterly and yearly goals was to break down the list into small digestible victories that would lead me to accomplishing my bigger goal. This was really helpful in making it not feel as daunting and I did the same when it came to my fitness. 

When I started my fitness journey I said to myself I wanted to be the healthiest version of myself in my 30s. As ambiguous as this goal was, the challenge was that this particular goal had no form of measurement. In some ways not having a way to measure this was the most motivating aspect of the process. Each small win felt like a huge victory. As my 12 week program turned into 3 years of a consistent lifestyle I realized that it wasn’t about making big changes, but making small shifts that helped form new habits. 

Here’s 10 Small Changes that you can make to impact your health in a large way:

  1. Drink a glass of water first thing in the morning. When you sleep your body is in a resting state and a little inflamed due to lack of movement while getting a good night’s rest. Drinking water first thing in the morning will help lubricate your lymphatic system which will kick start your body’s ability to drain the toxins from your body. I like to keep a S’well Bottle on a bedside table so that first thing in the morning I can have a nice swig of cold water to hydrate the body.
  2. Add protein into your breakfast. Protein is a great macronutrients to help support weight loss and maintenance. Adding egg whites or whole eggs to your breakfast in the morning can help keep the body satiated throughout the day. You can also get a healthy source of protein from Greek Yogurt. For those who are vegan, try a tofu scramble like this simple one from Minimalist Baker.
  3. Cook smarter, not harder.  Once you get into the groove of cooking healthier, get creative. I like to cook once and eat twice. For example I prepare a large batch of brown rice or quinoa and use it for some of my lunches for the week, dinners for the family, or even a savory breakfast bowl. I often do the same with my proteins and prep a batch that I can use both in my prepped meals and dinners for the family. 
  4. Sleep in your workout clothes, clean ones of course. This sounds silly, but sleeping in my set of workout clothes gets me prepared for that early morning workout. There’s no excuse for me to have to change out of pajamas while its cold and dark. I just grab my jacket, put on my shoes, and go!
  5. Start your day with your hype jams. I have a “Get Lifted” playlist that I use to get me in the mood for my day especially when I wake up in a funky mood. Some of the songs on my playlist include “Love on Top” by Beyonce. 
  6. Start a morning ritual like making coffee or fresh juice at home instead of running to your local coffee shop. I started to make our coffee again at home and there’s something about slowing down the morning with a nice ritual that helps calms the nerves and center your energy. 
  7. Use at least one weekend day a month to go on an outdoor adventure. Your biggest source of energy can be found from the elements such as sun and fresh air. Getting outdoors is not only good for the soul, but you get your intake of Vitamin D and fresh oxygen for the lungs. 
  8. Detox the pantry. When I first started my fitness journey, I got rid of all the unhealthy kids and adult snacks in the pantry and replaced items with granola, whole wheat crackers, and nuts. Sometimes as a parent you find yourself mindlessly snacking on kids snacks, so it was important for me to detox the house from those items. This helped to break the habit of mindless snacking.
  9. Pack healthy snacks like raw almonds, granola, or seasonal fruit with you to work or while running errands. Bringing healthy and wholesome nutrition helps to keep you away from convenience foods like candy bars and chips which are packed with refined sugars, high sodium content, and empty calories. You’ll start to notice how much more energy you have throughout the day when you’ve made small changes like this to your snacks.
  10. Switch up your workout routine or even your gym. Our bodies are incredible machines. It can regulate body temperature to stay at a steady 98.6 and can even heal itself when its sick. Since our bodies are so adaptable sometimes we plateau with our fitness progress. Switching up your routine after 12 weeks can help break this plateau and changing your gym environment can help stimulate dwindling motivation.
Muse Exhale Bra by Albion Fit Muse Leggings by Albion Fit

Muse Exhale Bra by Albion Fit

Muse Leggings by Albion Fit

Most people who run into me, lovingly tease me for always checking into a new gym or trying a new workout class. To some it looks like commitment issues, for me I like keeping my surroundings fresh. Most fitness studios will offer you a free first class or have really great rates for new sign ups.  For one week, January 2-6th, you can join Anytime Fitness for a $1 and a get free consultation to help you jump start your fitness goals. Find the location nearest you here.

Thank you Albion FIt for sending for the new activewear.

Jacket: Black Bomber Jacket // other option

Leggings: Muse Leggings by Albion Fit // other option

Sports bra: Muse Exhale Bra by Albion Fit// other option

Shoes: adidas Women's Ultra Boost Uncaged Running Shoes  // other option

Anytime Fitness provided me with compensation in exchange for this sponsored blog post. However, all the opinions expressed here are my own.

Joanne E

I’m a mother of two beautiful daughters and married to a man who completes me. I started my fitness journey as a way to heal my soul and launched my blog in hopes to continue to inspire and empower women to use fitness as a tool to heal depression and find their self worth. I strongly believe that each woman deserves to be in love with herself just as much as her man does. I have an obsession with reusable water bottles, I enjoy action movies, and I’m in love with burpees.

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Best Nine in 2016

Around this time of the year you start to see everyone's Best Nine on Instagram. I looked up mine and as amazing as it was to see that my progress photos got a lot of love, I was also really disappointed. It's great that these fun tools can provide us an insight on what the best liked photos were for the year, but on the flip side of things it doesn't quite show us the moments of our lives that we define as our best. So I decided to create my own.

In order from top left to right

1. In the beginning of the year I met some pretty amazing women and together we started to build one of the largest fitness communities in the SF Bay Area that's continuing to grow. Throughout all of my life I've had a hard time feeling like I fit in and 2016 was the year I finally let go of expectations of having to fit in and found my tribe. I realized by the end of the year that my tribe may not be one particular group of women, but maybe they are groups of women who represent the parts of my life that need nourishment in different ways. I've realized that the women I surround myself with are women who make me feel like I can be authentic and real to myself, my emotions, and my journey. My tribe comprises of women I've met, grown to love and learn from,  and who have helped shape me to become a better version of myself this year.  

2. I continued to refine my blog and grow my personal brand. It wasn't my intention to grow GOFITJO into a brand, but something that just happened organically. This year I worked with some incredible brands that wanted to highlight my story like Muscle Milk who came and film a 2 day video that was a pretty accurate representation of a day in the life of Joanne. I'm learning what collaboration looks like and seeing what opportunities this can mean for my brand and future business as a health coach.  But more importantly I've created some pretty incredible relationships with brands I love to support and who support my journey and that alignment has been the best feeling.

3. This year I wanted to get over my fear of public speaking and my first speaking engagement was at VSCO. I shared my journey to my co-workers and that was an experience I'll never forget. Getting vulnerable with people you see daily on a professional level tests your courage and bravery like no other experience and it was amazing to not only know that my story impacts my world on Instagram and social media, but to feel it in the workplace too. This was the moment solidified my belief that vulnerability is the birthplace of evolution and change. 

4. This is the moment I realized how much love I had for the woods and a weekend spent with the family in this tiny yellow cabin in Cazedero that we spent building fires, making s'mores, and enjoying unplugged moments together. So much of our lives are spent connected to a digital world and there's absolutely nothing wrong with that, but balance is the key. This was also the weekend where I discovered the important of meditation and my obsession with creating mindful moments in life began.

5. My husband and I went to Kauai for the first time in our lives to shoot another Hawaii wedding wedding. During our trip we got to sail and fly over the Napali Coast an experience I will never forget. Swimming in open sea caves and jumping into the Pacific Ocean along the Napali coast is a memory that will go down as one of the best of 2016. We met people who quickly became Ohana to us and now we're planning for our next trip to bring our girls on the same adventures we had. 

6. Creating more family memories by adventuring up and down the Pacific Coast in Northern California. We didn't get to bring our daughters to any of our travels this year, but we wanted them to experience adventure in their own backyards so that they didn't take for granted living in beautiful California. 

7. This year I was asked to speak at Nine Retreat. My first speaking opportunity of the year as Founder of GOFITJO. Nine Retreat was more than just a retreat, it was a place of really deep growth and connection. I came out of that retreat feeling like a different woman, seeing the way my life could grow on a personal and business level. I thrive on deep connection and that retreat really provided a foundation for that. 

8. 2016 tested my marriage like no other. My husband and I have been together for 15 years and married for near 8. Challenge and growth is something we've experienced for a long time with one another by each other's side. At some point this year we faced the truth that life was growing us apart and that we were no longer as connected as we want to be. This brought us to making more intentional decisions in our lives that would require open and honest communication with a side of compassion and empathy. Like I say all the time on my Instagram, marriage isn't a fairytale. Marriage is not what everyone thinks it is. It's not waking up early every morning to make breakfast and eat together. It's not cuddling in bed together until both of you peacefully fall asleep. It's not a clean home and a homemade meal every day. It's someone who steals all the covers. It's slammed doors and a few harsh words, fights and the silent treatment.

9. October of this year, I left behind a very stable career at VSCO as the Director of Community/Curation for a world unknown. I was laid off and it was and still continues to be a very hard transition to move past. I know its in the right direction as I'm now enrolled at Institute of Integrative Nutrition to get my International Health and Nutrition Coach Certificate. Although getting laid off was slightly unexpected, I know that its the best thing that can happen for my life. It's propelling me to pursue my dreams with relentless force. There's nothing left holding me back, but myself so its time to really step into 2017 with my whole heart. 

 Based on 2016BestNine, this is what my 2016 looked like. 


For me, there's so much more of my story than a before and after picture. There's so much more to GOFITJO than someone who works out for aesthetics or weight loss. Life's challenges comes in different shapes and sizes and creating the best moments in your life is up to you. 

A special little love goes out to Keri Berguist (@ravenlovestreasure) for creating her personal favorites of my feed and sent it over to me after ranting about my "Best Nine" on IG Stories.

 

 

Joanne E

I’m a mother of two beautiful daughters and married to a man who completes me. I started my fitness journey as a way to heal my soul and launched my blog in hopes to continue to inspire and empower women to use fitness as a tool to heal depression and find their self worth. I strongly believe that each woman deserves to be in love with herself just as much as her man does. I have an obsession with reusable water bottles, I enjoy action movies, and I’m in love with burpees.

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Kick Starting 2017 In a Healthy and Balanced Way

This tail end of the year I’ve been working on trying to define what fitness means to me. Since day 1 it has always been to become a healthier version of myself in my 30s. But as I continued on my fitness journey, I evolved. My intention stayed the same but I picked up little goals along the way. I competed in my first NPC Bikini Competition and continued to train for 2 years for a few more. 2016 was the first year I didn’t have the goal to step on stage for another competition. As I look back now at all the training I did for these competitions I realized how out of balance my life would be to try to commit to a sport like that in 2017. During my years of training for competitions I didn’t have the time or the energy to try out different workout classes because of the intensity of focus needed for the training. So in 2017, one of my goals is to have fun trying new fitness classes and trying different ways to move my body.

I’m partnering up with Barre3 to help kick start some of these goals I have in 2017.  Starting January 9th, barre3 is starting a 4 week guided program called B3 ALL IN,  that I’m excited to join. As you know I’m currently enrolled at Institute of Integrative Nutrition and was stoked to see Dr. Frank Lipman, one of the doctors who is part of my curriculum, played a key role in developing the program. The B3 ALL IN Handbook is FREE for all studio members and B3 Online subscribers and you have access to the Digital Community Board guided by some of the industry’s top wellness experts.

I spent some time yesterday during the afternoon digging through the handbook and was happy to see that the program is not a bootcamp or another crash diet, a concern I have when learning about any type of “program” that is put out there in the heath and fitness community. B3 ALL IN’s goal is to help inspire people to live a healthy, strong, and balanced life. 

To join me in B3 ALL IN, you can buy a barre3 Online Plus subscription or join a barre3 studio near you and if you head to any of the Bay Area locations let me know, I'd love to come join you!

My BBG Sisters joined me for some barre3: @fitleelou, @jenbonifacio, @diapersnbbg. Thanks ladies for driving the distance to join me for some sweat and shakes. 

My BBG Sisters joined me for some barre3: @fitleelou, @jenbonifacio, @diapersnbbg. Thanks ladies for driving the distance to join me for some sweat and shakes. 

barre3 Willow Glen location in San Jose, CA which also includes day care, if you need to bring your kiddies in during your sweat session.

barre3 Willow Glen location in San Jose, CA which also includes day care, if you need to bring your kiddies in during your sweat session.

As someone who loves to primarily weight train as their exercise this is going to be a fun challenge for me. In weight training or body building a lot of the focus is on the larger muscle groups while the smaller stabilizer muscles are often neglected. I’m excited to feel the difference in my body as I round out my regular training with barre. 

Joanne E

I’m a mother of two beautiful daughters and married to a man who completes me. I started my fitness journey as a way to heal my soul and launched my blog in hopes to continue to inspire and empower women to use fitness as a tool to heal depression and find their self worth. I strongly believe that each woman deserves to be in love with herself just as much as her man does. I have an obsession with reusable water bottles, I enjoy action movies, and I’m in love with burpees.

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