My Booty Might Wobble But It Won’t Fall Down

Chile. Last week felt so good. First of all, I got my butt back into the gym full swing. Like, every single weekday (plus a quickie on Saturday) AND I doubled back on two nights to train a new client and participate in my adult volleyball league as a “free agent”. I had to include that detail cause it makes me feel sort of like a highly sought after mega athlete. Lol.

Do yall see me? I mean do yall see me though?

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I am not a football fan but it is football season so what the heck, right. Long story short, my restart is no longer a restart. I’m in this bihhh! All in. The crazy thing is I’ve always been “in“, but I wasn’t “all in” this summer. Number one, I was feeling myself. You know how you get when your body is coming together and you begin to rest on your laurels. Yeah. That’s what happened in addition to the fact that summer ’16 was the pits for me. But I’m back like I never left. Who’s with me? I’m so excited about my restart that I just can’t keep it to myself. Below, you’ll find the details of my everyday leg routine. You should also follow me on the gram where I post all my workout snippets.

By now you know there’s 2 things I don’t play about–my legs and booty.

I keep it tight or at least I try my darndest to (hence, this post’s title)! The conditioning and cardio portion of my leg workout is not for the faint at heart but it’s nothing you can’t complete or work towards. Complete with high intensity for the best burn. Keep Scrolling:

Stair runs x 3 (two flights)

20 step ups / leg (dumbells optional)

20 Box jumps (Mine are about 3 feet off the ground but go with what you're comfortable with)

40 Frog Leaps

90 sec rest
*Repeat 5 times

Why am I so leg focused? Well, because we all have our problem areas, right? My legs are where my fat likes to hide. I like to seek it out and turn it into nice firm muscle. Simple.

But let’s discuss your booty, right quick.

Are you giving it the attention it deserves? Are you giving your workouts the attention they deserve? Are you giving yourself the attention you deserve? I mean, part of why I love working out is because it makes me feel good about myself. How are you feeling about your health and wellness? Are you keeping your junk fit? If not, what’s stopping you, girl? If tidying up your wellness corner is high on your list of priorities, why haven’t you committed yet? Like, really committed. Not gym membership commitment, but gym attendance commitment. You could have a litany of reasons but it really all boils down to the fact that you haven’t prioritized it. But if you think about it, you’re useless to anyone and anything else if you haven’t first taken care of your number one player…you.

Now let’s talk about how you can rearrange some things so that you are prioritizing yourself.

  1. Let it be known that this day henceforth, you are a servant of the queendom of (insert your fictional goddess name here). Mine used to be Princess Jasmine but I’ve transitioned to “Queen Jasmine Of JUNKFIT, Mother Of Peaks & Valleys”. Lol. You ARE a queen and your kingdom is your temple. If you don’t prioritize yourself, nobody else will. Show people how serious you are about becoming healthy! Don’t let people schedule you for anything else during your workout time. Tell your hubby that he’s got to hold down the fort while you hit the gym for an hour. Trust me, once people know it’s non-negotiable, they’ll respect your hustle and it’ll become easier to commit to.
  2. Place your workouts on your calendar. If you don’t take your workouts serious enough as it is, maybe it’ll help if you write them in with reminders and maybe even a description of what you’ll be doing in the gym or even a link to a workout via my blog ;-).
  3. Don’t let yourself out of it! This is SOOOO crucial. You have the angel on one shoulder and you have the devil on the other. To work out, or not to workout…that’s the big question. Allow the angel to guide and help you reach your goals. Don’t get into the habit of talking yourself out of things that you desire in your heart. You are worth the commitment, you can reach your goals, you can lose weight, you can gain muscle, you CAN and WILL look and feel amazing if you make the right choices.
  4. Eliminate unnecessary stress. You’ve got plenty on your plate, right? So do I. The trick is that I’ve slowly but surely learned to remove myself from situations that stress me the hell out. Like, seriously. I do it without even knowing it these days. The instant I’m stressing over something stupid or something that doesn’t contribute to the grand scheme of things, I bump that sucker right out of my life. Walking papers. Gone. This way, my mind space opens up and I’m more focused at work, getting things done at phantom speed. I actually begin to do even the simplest of things more quickly and seamlessly. Take blogging, for example…things move so much more quickly and my creative juices flow when I’m not stressed. Less stress means I approach my workouts in a totally different way.
  5. Don’t feel defeated. Look, I’ve fallen off at least 3 times in my fitness journey. For one reason or another, I just could not find the time or energy to do it. But that DOES NOT mean it is okay to completely stop or give up. So you were down to 150 and you went up to 170 once you started your new job?! Lose the weight again! That’s the beauty of life. Try again!

Anyway, gals and guys, I just wanted to share with you all how lit I’m feeling after my latest restart. Feel free to slide in my comments or even my inbox (lol) if you have comments, questions or anything.

Xo,

Jazz

 

 

 

Sigh. Another Day, Another Black Child Killed By Police

The year of 30 ushered in a certain heightened awareness of 1. My biological clock and 2. The possibility of birthing a Black man when I do decide to have children . Now, that’s not to say my finances, career and love life weren’t at the forefront of my thinking because they’ve always been. The year of 30 though…it made me think long and hard about my future children and what was in store for them.  Most women, White, Black or in between,  daydream about what their children will look and sound like. What their quirks will be or what type of personality they’ll have. Some think of how they’ll educate them (me) and how to make them well-rounded and empathetic (also me). On the contrary, most, if not all, black women wonder about the safety of their children, especially young boys, in addition to all the other motherly thoughts. This is something that, in America, I find is unique to only Black and Hispanic women. That’s true for those of us who are mothers and those of us who aren’t yet. It used to be that our brothers, uncles and fathers were our main subjects of concern. Now, that circle has expanded to include women, boys and even girls as young as 12. My thoughts didn’t stop there though.

I wondered, “What can I do to counter this?”. What would be the proper course of action for lil old me? What was within my scope of power and abilities? So. Just last week my students and I organized a first responders assembly to show our appreciation and gratitude for those whose duty it is to serve and protect our community. We hosted police officers, firefighters, and soldiers.  Although the assembly was rooted in remembrance of 9/11 and those who fell on that day, it was also about cultivating safe and friendly interactions between my students and their community police.

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East Baltimore Police, Firefighters and a US Army Sergeant all devoted their time to do the WORK in our community. Bigup!

It was my idea, they loved it, I loved that they loved it, and it was all gravy. That was until one of my students pulled me aside and asked why we haven’t acknowledged the Black Lives Matter movement.  My response was simple–“We will”. We most certainly will create a safe space for them to voice their outrage at what more and more feels like the slaughter of our people. Yep. We will. But I had to temper my emotions and if I’m being honest, I know it’s best for them to do the same.

Suffering a fatal gunshot wound at the hands of a police officer is a reality for Black children. It always has been–even when you’ve done nothing wrong. Even when you’re a child, playing alone in a park in broad daylight. Even if it feels like we’re villainized from birth and are herded into stereotypical categories that don’t even speak to our actual personalities or upbringing, we are the ones that must be decisive in our response to these matters. The burden falls on us to dictate how these interactions will go–it’s a matter of life or death. This is not to say that we can’t be mad. Hell, it’s not to say that we can’t be furious. It’s not to say that we won’t power through other avenues to receive justice and equality (salute to Black Lives Matter and other movers, shakers and policy makers who fight for justice daily). But we have to be smarter than ever when it comes to our children–our future. This is why it is so important that we do our part in reverse community policing.

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We gotta do our part to introduce police to our children on our terms. They should know and be familiar with our children. They should know that 13 year old Tyre was at a STEM school, that he was a boy’s boy, into bb guns, and sports. That he had hobbies that are consistent with the hobbies of millions of boys of ALL races. That Tyre and others that look, sound and act like him are human. They should know that he had his whole life ahead of him. While many of our blue brothers are in fact, doing the work, there are many of them who are not–so we have to. We have to bridge this disconnect.

I could go on and on about this. These are just a mashup of my immediate thoughts on this.I welcome thoughts and comments below. Solutions too. Sigh.

 

JUNKFIT’s Top 10 Fall Fitness Fashion Essentials

Fall is here and I’m here for it, honey! The crisp morning air, my coffee in tow to warm by cold hands, layering up, black, navy blue and burnt orange hues, dark nail polish with a matching muted burgundy lip. I actually bussed out my MAC “Fashion Revival” lipstick last weekend because I just could NOT wait. There are some super cute fitness trends that I am dying to get all the way into. Shall we proceed?

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Now, we all know how important it is for us to look good while we work out. It’s a confidence hack. Kind of how we fix our posture to invoke confidence and self-assurance, fly and sporty fitness clothing works in the same way. Right or right?! Lol. I’ve compiled a list of my top ten fitness fashion picks for the fall. Much like mainstream fashion, the looks change by the season. You’ll notice a difference in colors, material, the whole nine yards. Afterall, your neon yellow wind breaker aint gonna get you through those winter jogs, will it? Make sure you’re ready with these essentials:

1. The Running Jacket

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UnderArmour’s Swacket is a simple yet sleek version of the essential running fleece. There’s no doubt that a good performance fleece is necessary during fall and winter runs but you might as well be cute with it. It’s a piece that you’ll be wearing frequently so you want quality and style. Weightless, yet water-resistant, super warm, with reflective features . Add to that, it’s super cute.

 

2. Patterned Tops & Bottoms

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Fabletics, Kate Hudson’s fitness line, has a VAST selection of stylish fitness apparel. I repeat, STYLISH. I was actually shocked at how cute the outfits are. One item that jumped out at me was this sporty running jacket. The Jojo, actually comes with matching Curacao Capris. Now, capris aren’t ideal for a brisk morning run, especially if you got no ankle meat, like myself. But, the outfit comes at a 50% discount when you sign up as a VIP member. Boom!

3. High Rise / Mesh Combo Tights 

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I can never get enough of these. I’ll be the first to say that I’ve seen these done ENTIRELY WRONG. If the material is cheap or flimsy, these can actually mess up an otherwise sporty outfit. Lulu Lemon is known for it’s superior quality. You can count on these to hold you snugly throughout your workout. I prefer a high rise pant to avoid that gradual tug and sag that happens when you’re running or squatting. I know these are capris but I’m sharing them because they’re on sale for $44. It’s a steal for Lulu. Jump on it.

4. Nike Prestos

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Does anyone remember Nike Prestos from the early 2000’s? Well, Nike brought them back for the 2016 Olympics and I could not be happier. I haven’t grabbed mine yet but these will be my fall/winter workout kicks. I love the black on black and the way they make my feet look tiny. Size 9+, gone head and grab you a pair!

 

5. Leg Warmers

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IDK about you all, but leg warmers are kind of an essential for me. I’ve been sporting the same pair from Target for the past 2 years. They’re ideal for cold, outdoor, winter workouts or if you just want some added warmth with your tights on your way to the gym.

6. Marathon-Ready Sports Bras

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Marathon season is upon us. If you plan to compete in your 10 miler, 20 miler, you’ll need a bra that’ll support your lady lumps for an extended period of time. Sports bras are really a catch 22. On one hand, you want the support but on the other hand you don’t want it to be so constricting that it gives you back aches. Enter Nike’s Pro Rival Hero. Dri Fit technology, adjustable racerback, enough coverage to eliminate bounce while still showing off some sexy. Perfect.

7. The Fanny Pack

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Even as a child, I could never get with the fanny pack look. It wasn’t until I desperately needed it for runs and workouts that I took a look into using one. My life has’t been the same since. I tuck my keys away in mine, along with my chap stick, Kleenex, and anything else I may need while on my run. I actually need a new one and I found a simple yet effective fanny pack on Etsy.

8. Dark Graphic Tees

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No matter how old I get, the graphic tee will always be a staple in my fitness wardrobe. They’re so effortlessly chic when styled properly and can transition into an all day outfit if you have errands to run after your workout. Pair it with tights or baggy sweats-either way you’re gonna look stylish. Rainbow has them for thee lowest of the low. I mean as low as $3.99. I lie to you not.

9. The Duffle

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I’ve always been a fan of the Puma bowling bag but now that Rih is contracted with them, I feel like it would be fitting to go with a more vintage, 90’s duffel look. Puma has a plethora of expensive bag options but you might do better by hitting up Marshall’s or Nordstrom Rack for an older version. This one will cost you 12.99. Yep.

10. The Strappy Long Sleeve T

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Kate Hudson really outdid herself with her Fall line. There is an abundance of sexy and sultry fitness options. This one jumped out at me because I love to show off my back.  Check it out on Fabletics.

With the exception of Fabletics, these are brands I’ve used (quite often I should add) throughout my fitness journey. I hope this was helpful! What Fall Fitness Fashion are you serving up this year? Share below!

Xo,

Jazz

 

Falling Off & Getting Back On

If you’ve ever checked for my blog or social media posts, I think its pretty obvious why I chose this topic for my comeback again post. But for those of you who are stumbling across my blog for the first time, things have been slower than molasses ’round these parts. New content is coming but before that happens, let’s chat about why I fell off of my blogging and workout game. For starters, summer ’16 was everything Aubrey said it would be.

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via GIPHY

It was my first summer back in the DMV and I made it count. I mean there were boozy brunches galore, day parties, cookouts, rooftop soirees, amusement parks, cooking classes, comedy shows, museums, exhibits, camping, late night sh*t-talking with friends over bonfires, and add to that, I’m on Match.com now so you know the dates just rolled right in (we’ll discuss in another post). I frolicked ’til my heart’s content. Truly. Honestly. A girl just was living her life on the weekends. Cause when Monday hit, things got real.

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This summer was BY FAR thee most stressful summer I’ve had in a long time. Work consumed most of my energy during the week and I’ll be honest in that I did not push myself to go onward once 6 pm hit. I simply said “I’m exhausted so when summer camp is over in 6 weeks, I’ll resume my workouts.” But that was super weak and I know it. I knew it the instant I started telling myself that b.s. There were so many things I could’ve done to offset the fact that I wasn’t working out or blogging. I could’ve funnelled my daily nutrition to the blog and committed to at least one post per week. Don’t get me wrong, I made mindful eating choices (on weekdays) and worked out at least once per week but it was a far cry from the 5 day regimen I was on. By my standards, that meets the qualifications for “falling off”. But if you’re human, like me, you know that sometimes you just can’t go as hard as you normally would but you should try make sure you give what you do have in you. Obviously, I had more than one day a week and smoothies. Like really, Jasmine!?  Since my stress levels have gone back down, I’m back to the regularly scheduled program. Let me share with you how I got myself back in the game.

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First of all, the stress has dissipated. But there are a few factors that also contributed to me getting back on the ball again.

  1. I set a bed time and started “logging off” at least an hour before hand. I’d heard of this sleep improvement strategy before but somehow the Blameitonkway Instagram sketches would keep me locked in right up until I passed out. Anyway, unplugging in advance helps me get better quality sleep. Thus, giving me energy to last throughout the day.
  2. I noticed my family and friends that kept going. For starters, as of July, my dad was down 20 pounds and he always reminds me that I was his source of motivation. Then he turned around and motivated me. Funny how that works. Additionally social media provides me with so much inspiration at different times and from so many different people. I’ve got friends that are slaying the blog game, slaying their workouts and they really motivate me to step my game up.
  3. I ate dried fruit and nuts to give myself an added burst of energy. Dried fruit and nuts are a sure way to get a quick burst of energy and sustained energy throughout your workout.
  4. I bought some new gym gear.Idk about you but a cute new outfit is all the motivation I need. Might I also add that I am a certified maxanista these days. TJMaxx has the hookup on fitness apparel and accessories. You can get things at half the price or even less. It’s disgusting!
  5. I decided that I’d stop overbidding and commit to just a one article minimum per week. I had planned out this lengthy editorial calendar to cover every nook and cranny of wellness but it turned out to be a lot for me. One article a week gives me a small task to start with and of course I’d have the option of upping the ante once I get in a good flow.

Do you guys have any strategies to get yourself back into the swing of things after a hiatus? Drop a comment below!

5 Tips To Fitting A Workout Into Your Schedule

For those of us with a packed schedule, it’s super difficult to find time to meal prep and eat, let alone make it to the gym and get a full session in. We’ve got jobs, relationships, families, school, and a litany of extracurriculars that make it nearly impossible to get to the gym. If you struggle with fitting your entire routine in or even making it to the gym, you’re not alone. The last few months were crazy for me (in a great way) but it became increasingly apparent that I needed to tighten up on my strategy. I’ve thrown together a list of things that helped me get my life:

  1. Pack your bag the night before and review your check-list. I go to the gym in the mornings and I shower there after my workout. My check-list includes flip-flops, a towel and wash cloth, toiletries, a comb, a brush, my scarf, my lock, ear phones and of course, my clothes and shoes I plan to wear to work. It really doesn’t seem like such a big deal but this is similar to packing an overnight bag. For most of us, it’s no easy feat. We can get stalled on something as simple as bobbie pins…the black or the brown? The curved or the ridged? Body wash suddenly becomes a life decision. Caress or Shea Moisture? Bar soap or liquid? I can’t be the only one! Lol. Therefore, I go on ahead and get all that out of the way the night before.
  2. Know what you want to do before you get there. It helps when you have an idea of what you’re going to accomplish that day as opposed to going and just winging it. I’ve winged it a lot in the past and sometimes it’s great, other times I leave the gym feeling like I wasted my time because, quite simply, I did. I could’ve moved with phantom speed, flowing from machine to machine, mat to wall, track to stairs but, no. I couldn’t decide between the inclined leg press or an overhead press. What part of my body needs more work? All things I should have given thought to before my workout.
  3. Create your playlist ahead of time and resist the urge to mess with your player during your workout. I know for sure that when I don’t follow this rule, I get pulled into so many distractions such as JUNKFIT.org, a random text or a work email. Focus on the workout, not your phone.
  4. Give yourself enough time to move between locations. Meaning, if you want a 90 minute workout and it takes you 30 min to get to the gym and another 30 to get from the gym to work, you need to do the math so that you’re comings and goings allow for the workout you want. Don’t let a killer 90 minute sesh turn into a lackluster “at least I made it the gym” 30 minute kinda thing.
  5. Lastly, your workouts should fall under your category of “non-negotiables”. There is no IF you can make it to the gym that day. There is only WHEN. You will make it to the gym because you’ve planted that seed and you WILL see it grow. Remember, being healthy, fit, in shape, whatever you call it, it’s a lifestyle. So, get with it. Fall in love with it. It will only love you back!

JUNKFIT Baltimore “Sweat Sesh” Sunday May 22nd

Join us for JUNKFIT’s first ever “Sweat Sesh” this Sunday, May 22nd. We’ll be pumping it up just in time for Summer ’16. Meet at the YMCA at 33rd Street Field in Baltimore, MD at 1:00 pm. Don’t forget to bring your mat, water and small weights if you have them. It’s free so tell your girls and get with us!

All fitness levels are welcomed 😉

RSVP at junkfit@gmail.com.

-Jazz

 

The Gym Class Dance Party With DCWKLY + Reebok

My Saturday started out as regular as can be. That was until I scrolled down my Insta timeline and found an awesome event hosted by, the popular lifestyle blog, DCWKLY. The first ever Gym Class DC went down in a super dope space with even more dope giveaways!

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Safe to say I’m now slim-thick…or nah?

This was my first time ever hearing of the artistic space, Blind Whino, so it was kinda cool that my first visit was fitness-motivated. It couldn’t have come at a better time because I was literally suiting-up to head to my gym (the YMCA in Central MD). While I love my normal gym, there are always very old and wrinkled women in the gym and most of the classes are catered to their age group (think aquatic workouts and seated bicep curls with 2 lb weights). I very seldom get to workout alongside young, hot and fun young women like myself. So, of course I hightailed it to Southwest DC to get in on the fun. Needless to say, I had a good ass time.

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With my main, Faviola.

Booty exercises were in abundance, which is consistent with the fact that millennials are obsessed with uplifting the almighty junk in the trunk (hence JUNKFIT). I’m talking bridges, single leg bridges, pulsing squats, jump squats, lunges and pulsing lunges. It was just what the doctor ordered because my legs had long grown tired of the mundane leg press and squat combo I’d been lazily doing for the past 6 weeks. Yesterday was just the wake-up my body needed. Speaking of what my body needed, did I mention the free sneakers from Reebok?! Yess, honey. You missed it! Lol. Reebok literally laced your girl with new Mauve Woven Classic Furylites. They retail for $75 (I had to look it up). I hear the event will be a monthly thing, so stay tuned and next time come get you some!

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Footwork 😉

I’m corny so you know I had to share the fact that Reebok tweeted my yesterday…

Have a blessed week and if you’re in B-more, join me for my first ever Meet-Up at the Y at Waverly, Saturday May 21st @ 10 a.m.! More info to come!