A Woman In Progress, Redefining GOFITJO

I’m back in NY in 3 days and I can’t believe it. 😬 I never started traveling as much as I do until last year and I’m so grateful that a large majority of it is because of my blog and opportunities via social media.

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A few nights ago my teenage daughter looked at me while we were having dinner and said, “Mom, I’m so proud of you. I remember a few years ago when you had no motivation in anything. And to see what you’ve done not only with your health, but everything else is great.” **insert all the tears** 2018 was not an easy year for me despite what you’ve seen on the gram. We moved this year to a new city, new home, my daughters had to make new friends, work dramatically shifted for me, and I’m finding myself in yet another state of “what do I want to do next with my career? How do I level up for me and family?”

As many of you know when I lost my 9-5 job in 2016 I immediately jumped back into school to get my health and nutrition coaching certification. My coaching practice has always been focused on helping women redefine health and strengthen the relationship that have with themselves. What I didn’t anticipate was so many of my coaching calls were more deeply rooted in personal development and relationships. I guess it makes sense when all I want to do is help people live life as their best selves and to be in love with the person they are becoming. Which is why the entire term #womaninprogress has been engrained in my heart and mind all year long. We are all a work in progress and a beautiful masterpiece all at once.

Change is hard and I don’t think society makes it easy for us to acknowledge that. This year has been a fucking rollercoaster ride for me. I’ve shed many tears of happiness and many tears of frustration, fear, and sadness. I felt like I lost my desire to exercise as much because of how much emotional stress I’ve been under and often times the feeling of imposter syndrome runs through my veins. I’ve shifted a lot of my focus into making sure that my family is well taken care of especially because my husband has been dealing with his own set of personal growth challenges which has taken a toll on his business as well. All this to say I feel like there are times where I’m crumbling between my own finger tips.

What keeps me going? I’m a woman in progress. A woman who is in the process of learning to know, accept and love herself on all levels: Mind, Body and Spirit. A woman who, because she focuses on personal growth and self awareness, experiences a life increasingly filled with peace, love, joy, passion and fun. A woman that understands that she has unlimited capacity to make her life anything she wants. A woman who is inspired to give to those around her, a sense of gratitude and abundance.

Being in progress never feels easy. There’s this internal struggle I feel sometimes with my thoughts and what I want to present to the world. Mainly because I’m still in the process of processing those thoughts and haven’t arrived to any clear conclusion that I felt would make sense to people reading or understanding. Dare I say I feared judgement. Even writing that feels icky and gross because here I am constantly wanting to guide you through standing strong against judgement. None the less I’m only human and as a human I still have feelings and emotions and its messy and beautiful all at the same time.

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I guess I’m sharing this with you all because I was having this deep conversation with my daughter this morning about growth, life, relationships, travel, and work. She expressed the pride she felt for herself to have overcome such an emotional challenge year having to switch schools and make new connections. As she and I were talking about life, I couldn’t help but borrow some of that feeling of pride she had for herself and look inwards at my own life over the past year. Yes, there has been some difficult moments and moments I felt like a failure. At times I’ve felt very weak mentally and physically, but overall I’ve overcome a great deal this past year.

An area I feel like I failed miserably was taking my readers along this year of growth and change. I think mostly because I feared what it would look like to you all once I started to shift my focus to all the primary foods in our lives: relationships, spirituality, career, and physical activity rather than writing or sharing about nutrition and meal prep tips. Would people be receptive to this growth mindset that I’ve adopted into all areas of my life?

A lot of this change happened back in 2016 when Instagram curated my Best of Nine for that year and all that was selected were progress photos. I remember thinking to myself I AM MORE than just progress photos. 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. I hope as I get back to some of my roots of writing from the heart that you’ll join me along for the journey. I have no idea where its going to take me, but I do know that I’m bringing you along my journey of a woman in progress.

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What does this all mean for my blog?

For almost half the year of 2018 I was going back and forth on rebranding, a completely silly idea considering that I had just rebranded my blog with Go Live HQ in October 2017. What I think it means is that as a reader you’ll still see my journey with using fitness as a tool to help me get my life together, to help me gain inner strength for my challenges, and to help me keep my anxiety and depression under control. But what I think it also means is that I’ll start to open up other areas in my life to you with a bit more of a raw and unfiltered take getting back to inviting you to the depths of my thoughts as I explore the different areas of women’s wellbeing and health such as emotional wellbeing, relationships, and dare I say, sexual health!

What I’ve learned in 2018 is that so much of our well-being as women is deeply rooted in the areas that we’re just getting comfortable talking about. When I opened up about my marriage and its ups and downs on Instagram and my blog, I got a huge wave of response from my audience. That blog post was the most read blog post in 2018 and I was shocked. I’ve always believed that how we approach our relationships in life whether they be romantic, professional, or personal is a direct reflection of the relationship we have within ourselves. And the relationship we have with ourselves directly affect our mental, emotional, and physical health.

There’s so much to unpack with direction and its exciting for me and extremely scary as well. I think from a society standpoint we’re still learning to define what health means to us on an individual level. Now I’m throwing a whole set of unconventionally discussed topics to the table to bring in a much more expansive discussion on health. I’m excited. It feels right, but also so damn scary.

I’d love to hear your thoughts either in the comments below or on Instagram.





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.