Time for a Shift: Turning to The Energy Channel

By Judith

For as long as I can remember, I’ve belonged to a gym. I began regularly exercising in 1995, and since then, my identity as a “healthy, fit” person has been, in many ways, tied to having a gym membership.

So, when I started thinking about making a change, it wasn’t easy.

For a few weeks, I sat on the idea of leaving the gym before I finally pulled the trigger. As I wrote the email to cancel my membership, I reminded myself that I wasn’t giving up fitness or my healthy lifestyle.

I was just making a shift – to The Energy Channel.

For nearly five years, in addition to my gym membership, I’ve been a client of The Energy Barre, a barre studio located about 10 minutes from my house, in the north suburbs of Boston.

Little did I know that when I took a free trial class in March 2015, my life would change forever. I found strength I didn’t know I had, a space where I felt welcomed and accepted, and a community of powerful yet compassionate women.

I was intrigued when I heard about the launch of The Energy Channel, The Energy Barre’s online platform that brings barre, matte, cardio, yoga, and HITT classes to clients whenever and wherever. I didn’t act, though, mainly because of that expensive gym membership. I also told myself it would too hard to deal with equipment for at-home workouts.

But as my stress levels skyrocketed in the fall, I knew something had to give. On days I went to my downtown gym at lunch, I was finding myself spending most evenings doing work that I didn’t finish in the office. I wasn’t leaving myself any down time.

I also realized that the gym was no longer bringing me joy. My favorite group fitness instructor had left, and I was tired of forcing myself onto the treadmill to run. And I was truly tired of paying so much for something I didn’t love so much anymore.

In November, I decided to give The Energy Channel a whirl. It’s been one of the best decisions I’ve made in a long time.

I am an early riser. When I step onto my mat and turn on my laptop in the darkness before my day begins, I am always greeted by a friendly EB instructor. The workouts are fun and motivating, and I love how I can mix and match shorter cardio and toning classes based on my schedule and how I’m feeling.

I get the same great workouts I get at the studio – and I save time by skipping the drive. I also love how I can do these whenever I want. Sometimes I have a window to work out on the weekend and there’s not a studio class to match.

And it wasn’t a big deal to get the equipment! I got a purple ball, gray band, and silver balls from The Energy Barre and II bought 2-and 3-pound weights on Amazon. I don’t have a block (yet!) but I make do with the purple ball.

Of course, I will continue to attend classes at The Energy Barre whenever I can. There’s no substitute for the warmth of the community.

I see The Energy Channel as a supplement to – and not a replacement for – my time in the studio. It’s allowed me to enter 2020 calmer, more centered, and once again, feeling joy from my movement.

Want to give The Energy Channel a whirl? You don’t need to be a local because it’s entirely online! Through January 31, you can grab 20% off a three-class bundle (7-day access; three classes including one of each – signature class, cardio class, and specialty class). To get the savings:

  1. Log into your account / Create an Account if you don’t have one yet
  3. In the promotional code section type JUJUSWHOLE30

Cooking With A Friend

We spend A LOT of time in the kitchen on Whole30 and it can get a bit lonely in there. Make a menu, grab a friend, and bring the fun back in the kitchen.

I invited over my friend Christy, who’s doing her first Whole30 round, and we set out to meal prep for the day while our spouses went fishing. We had the whole day ahead of us to cook.

Two hours later, my husband walks in the door soaking wet from his chest down. Guess what was in his pocket? His new phone. There’s so much to say about this but I’ll skip it and go straight to the recipes. If you’re married or have a significant other, you know what I’m thinking!

We came up with a few dishes to make and improvised the rest. Dividing up the shopping took the longest but, in the end, I think we did okay. Best of all, we had fun!

Here’s what we made:

Paleo Gluten Free Eats’ Creamy Avocado Cilantro Lime Dressing – I love this sauce. It goes on everything.

Eat The Gains’ Creamy Lemon Garlic sauce-we doubled up on this recipe and I think I may have messed this one up a bit. We weren’t crazy about this one but, again, I don’t think we followed the recipe exactly as it was written.

Christy’s Super Amazing Nut Butter – this is one that Christy made up. She roasted some pecans and walnuts and then tossed them in the vitamix with some coconut oil and salt. She lugged her vitamix over for these sauces-I need to get myself one of those. The nut butter was out of this world!

Primal Gourmet’s Whole30 Greek Burgers

We wanted to have something yummy to freeze for an emergency meal and these fit the bill. Easy and quick to make and ready to take out of the freezer on a day we don’t want to cook!

Farmstead Chic’s Whole30 Plantain Rice

Move over cauliflower rice! Plantain rice is here to stay. This is so easy to make and very hearty. I’m going to make this when I want but don’t have time to make tostones.

Farmstead Chic’s Whole30 Breakfast Casserole

It’s as tasty as it is pretty. This is perfect for breakfast when you’re getting sick of eggs. I made mine go a little further by mixing it with two eggs in the morning.

One Lovely Life’s Slow Cooker Butter Chicken

The butter chicken is divine! You can adjust the heat to your liking. With little ones at home, I tend to make it mild.

We had chicken thighs and ground meat leftover so we dumped some umani seasoning from Trader Joe’s on the chicken thighs and put some onions, parsley, and other stuff in the meatballs. Other stuff meaning I can remember but they turned out really good!

If you get together with your friend or friends and cook, let us know. Send pictures and recipe!

Coach Juju’s January Faves

Happy Day #9 of the January Whole30! It’s been exciting to see how many people are taking on this challenge to improve their lives, their relationship with food, and their all-around well-being!

I am a few days ahead of the “official” January Whole30 – today is my Day #11 and I am feeling GREAT! Bring on the Tiger Blood!

This month, as I am doing my own Whole30, I wanted to share some of my current favorite products. These are my tried and true standbys that I rely on ALL of the time! I hope these help you as you navigate your round!

  • Fourth & Heart Himalayan Pink Salt Ghee: This is my ride-or-die added fat on Whole30. Sometimes I use it in the pan to cook and other times, I add a nice dollop to my food. It’s salty, buttery, and makes everything taste better! I usually grab it on Amazon but recently I got a GREAT deal on it on Thrive Market and I stocked up!
  • The New Primal Cilantro Lime Meat Sticks: True confession time: These meat sticks have become my #1 favorite on-the-go protein. They are SO smoky (they remind me of salami) and delicious. The New Primal recently converted all of their meat sticks to become Whole30 Approved – and this is the best news to kick off 2020. You can grab yours at www.thenewprimal.com and use code “WHOLE30FACEBOOK” to save 25% off your order!
  • Chosen Foods Avocado Oil: Avocado oil is my go-to cooking oil for pretty much everything I make – for both me and my daughter. I go through it quickly so I try to get the big bottles from Costco (when my friends go to Costco and buy them for me!) when I can. If not, I can find this at Target or Trader Joe’s, or on Amazon.
  • Georgia Grinders Cashew and Pecan Butter: This Whole30 Approved nut butter – made with a family recipe – blows any other nut butter out of the water. It’s so good that it’s almost TOO good – be sure to portion out some to use as your added fat so you don’t accidentally eat the whole jar! I will often add a spoonful to fruit on my plate as an added fat or use in a recipe – like this one from Whole Kitchen Sink. Use code “JUJURULES” at www.georgiagrinders.com for free shipping on orders $30+.
  • nutpods: I am a coffee queen and I start my day with two cups of coffee with nutpods. They make me so happy. And yes, I go to bed at night dreaming of my morning coffee! You can grab yours at www.nutpods.com with code “JUJUSWHOLE30” to save 15% off your first order! COFFEE IS LIFE!
  • Paleo Powder Coating Mix: One of my favorite recent easy meals is chicken tenders made in my Air Fryer with Paleo Powder coating mix. I dip the chicken in egg and then roll in the coating mix. Then, I put it in my Air Fryer, spray with some extra virgin olive oil or avocado oil, and cook at 400 degrees for 10 minutes or so on each side. I dip in compliant ranch or ketchup and enjoy! These are great to reheat during the week as well or chop up to use on a salad. You can snag the coating mixes for 20% off with code “EVERYDAYWHOLE” at http://bit.ly/2J2NlJ1.
  • Tessemae’s Buffalo Ranch Dressing: I received this dressing as part of a gift pack sent to all Whole30 Coaches for the January Whole30. I was skeptical because I thought I didn’t like Tessemae’s products. Boy, was I wrong! I quickly started putting this on EVERYTHING I ate and used it to make this buffalo ranch chicken casserole. It is so good that I ordered a bunch more from Thrive Market to make sure I was well stocked for my January round! Through January 31, you use grab 20% off Tessemae’s products with code “W30COACH” at www.tessemaes.com
  • Polar Seltzer: Polar is a local favorite here in the Boston area and I can’t get enough. I especially love the seasonal winter flavors and the junior cans. If you can find Polar in your area, it’s a winner in my book and the perfect way to wash down your Whole30 meals!
  • Special deliveries – Misfits Market and Cooked: To keep your Whole30 fresh and interesting, it’s fun to receive some special deliveries. Every other week, I get a box of organic produce from Misfits Market. I don’t know in advance what I will receive but it’s a neat challenge to cook it all. If you want to give it a try, code “COOKWME-TY6OGJ” will give you a discount (usually between 25-50% off) on your first box at www.misfitsmarket.com. And if you need a break from cooking, Whole30 Approved partner Cooked will save the day! I’ve been working with them to create some new Whole30 Approved meals that you can just heat and eat. You can save 15% off your first order with code “EVERYDAYWHOLE” at www.eatcooked.us. Enjoy the time away from the kitchen!