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Filtering by Tag: Before/After

5 things that happen when you quit telling yourself the BS stories about why you can’t follow that nutrition guide

Jena Chopson

So I recently wrote a blog about excuses and meal prepping. You can read more about that here

But lately, I’ve been hearing excuses after excuses as to why people can’t follow the meal plan. And like I said in the previous post, I completely get it. I’ve done it too—-so many times. 

But what I really want you guys to see is that they are ALL just EXCUSES. I know they sound super noble in your head, and some of them may even be genuinely noble. But they’re still an excuse at the end of the day. You can polish a turd to make it shiny, but it’s still going to be a turd. 

When I was selected to be a part of the Core de Force test group, I made the DECISION that I was going to check my excuses—-ALL of them—- at the door and finally do this shit the way I was supposed to. 

Some amazing things happened when I did that. And you should know about them, because they can happen to you, too if you’re willing to do what you THINK you cannot do (aka, ditch all the excuses): 


1.) I spiced up my food life

“But Jena,” you say, “Nothing is spicier than bellying up to the bar and ordering me a big, juicy cheeseburger and fries!” Are you sure about that? I mean, really? Here’s the thing: I love me a good burger just as much as the next person. I can throw back a burger with fries and an IPA like no other. And while it often feels super tasty and satisfying going down, it is almost always met with regret and self-loathing later. 

You can still have your burgers now and then. Even your pizza, too. But what this has really opened me up to is trying so many NEW foods. I have explored foods that I don’t typically eat and I have been more than pleasantly surprised at how much I really love the flavors and how amazing they make me FEEL. 

Gone is that bloated, gross feeling you get after pigging out. Instead, you eat delicious foods and you feel equally amazing afterward

Trying new foods has been hands down my favorite part of this. I make it a challenge to find as many new, healthy recipes I can find using foods I don’t typically eat. I’m often surprised at the amazing stuff I’ve been missing out on. 

Give it a try. There are SO many incredible foods out there. You truly don’t know what you’re missing out on….and your body doesn’t either. Its response to finally getting the nutrition it craves will shock you in the form of more energy, better sleep, and overall higher function.


2.) I realized it wasn’t as hard as I thought it was going to be. 

I still remember the day I got my 21 day fix package in the mail. I was SO excited. I ripped open the packaging, pulled out those colorful containers, set them on the counter….and then cried. 

“Bbbbuuut, they are SO small!” I exclaimed to myself, in a moment of self-pity. RIDICULOUS! But we all do it, right? The problem was, I hadn’t even given the process a try. I was self sabotaging myself before anything had even begun. All I had done at that point is essentially blow those little containers up with my death defying evil stare and then cry about another “failed attempt” at getting my nutritional shit together. 

It wasn’t until I actually gave the process a try and plated the food out when I realized….holy crap. This isn’t as hard as I thought it was going to be, and there is a LOT of really good food here! 

Duh, Jena. Trust the process. Stop freaking out about it before you even give yourself an actual shot at being successful. Quit the BS dialogue happening in your head about all your previous failures you’ve had, and about all the food you CAN’T have, and start focusing on how you’re going to make THIS a freaking success…and focus on the foods you GET to eat. 


3.) I got results

This should be a no-brainer, but like I said in my last blog post, you’d be surprised at the number of my clients who are shocked that they didn’t get the results they had hoped for after completing a couple weeks of a program. When asked how the nutrition plan is going, I often get the response, “What nutrition plan?” Or…”Well, aside from my couple cheat days a week, it’s going great!” *Facepalm* 

I won’t essentially re-post my prior blog, but get real with yo-self. Results are probably at the very least 70-80% what you are fueling your body with. Period. End of story. If you can’t commit to fueling your body the way it NEEDS to be fueled, then don’t be shocked when you don’t end up with the results you’d hoped for. It’s like your body needing Premium fuel to function but you continually putting in Regular fuel because you didn’t want to spend the extra 20 cents per gallon….and then wondering why there are always engine problems. Hmmm…..


4.) I feel freaking amazing. 

I made mention of this above, but seriously….when you fuel your body right, it rewards you tenfold. I have felt so damn GOOD in the past 3-4 weeks, it is truly hard to describe. 


5.) I gained CONFIDENCE

I say this all the time, but when you check your excuses at the door and just go get it done, you exude badassery. 

Now that I have officially meal prepped for 7 night shifts in a row (you read that right), and stuck with a nutrition guide I “thought I could never stick with,” I have a renewed sense of confidence. I also feel like I can relate to everyone who has struggled with nutrition in the past (as I have had my fair share of can read a smidge more about that here!). 

But above all, I just feel confident. I know that I CAN do this, despite the obstacles. It just takes a little willingness, some preparation, and above all, the DESIRE to put my health first. 


You can do this, too. If you’re struggling and you need help, I’d love to mentor you through the process. As someone who has struggled tremendously in the past, it feels absolutely incredible to have broken through so many obstacles and come out on the other side. 

I can’t wait until you experience these things, as well. 

Til next time,



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When you don't see eye to eye....

Jena Chopson

I get a lot of questions about what to do when you have an "unsupportive spouse" when it comes to your health & fitness journey, or when it comes to your new business. 

Although Doug is doing a workout program with me now, it most definitely has not always been this way. Allow me to show you a picture of what our workout partnership has looked like for 99% of the time we have been together: 

Doug sitting in our front yard propped up with a Miller Lite while I race my 5K. 

Doug sitting in our front yard propped up with a Miller Lite while I race my 5K. 

This is a topic I get really passionate about. Allow me to share a little bit of my story....

I've always been into health and fitness my entire life. Don't make fun of me--I literally have memories of running around the playground at recess as a young child with the GOAL to work up a sweat. Not exactly what most little girls aim to achieve at recess, right? 

Even though I haven't always been healthy (you can read more about that here), being athletic, active, and conscientious about my health has always been a huge passion of mine.  So of course as opposites tend to attract, I wind up marrying a man who basically has zero interest in all of the aforementioned topics. ZERO. 

Let's be honest. I married him this way. I knew the man I was marrying going into this whole thing. Still, I would be lying if I said it didn't sting a little bit every time I headed out for a run, or downstairs to do my workout, alone

This great divide became all the more apparent when I started a business as a health and fitness coach. I'm not going to say he was unsupportive, because to me that means he was basically doing everything in his power to make sure I didn't succeed. He was more, shall I say, standoffish. "Do whatever you want babe, but I think it's all ridiculous." That was a better way to describe it. And even though that's better than being completely unsupportive, it still sucked.  This was a HUGE deal to me and a HUGE passion of mine, and something I was really excited about....and he just wasn't excited.  

So what did I do? You might think I came up with some elaborate plan to bring him over to the "dark side," right? Well, you'd be wrong. You see, you can't change other people. Even when that person happens to be your spouse. The only thing you can do is better yourself and aim to become a better person, spouse, individual, whatever and continue to set the example along the way. 

I had no idea if Doug would ever develop an interest in his own health and fitness, but I always knew that he would have to come to terms with that on his own. If you're in the health & fitness space, you know as well as I do that we cannot force anyone to want to change, they have to want it for themselves first. 

I asked Doug about a week ago, "What was it that finally made you commit to your health?" And he basically responded with, "I was tired of being the fat kid. And I knew it would only bring us closer. So I went all in." That's the Doug version of saying what we hear all too often from people who finally hit their breaking point and are ready to make a change: Enough is enough. Something has to change. 

The key point here is this: If I had given up on him, on myself, on the journey....then he might never have come to these terms. If you feel like you have an "unsupportive" spouse, if you feel like your significant other will never make his or her health a priority, if you feel like you are alone--Don't. Give. Up. 

Stay consistent. Stick with it. Continue to work on and develop yourself. Pray for him or her, for your relationships. And who knows? You may one day be taking sweaty selfies with your spouse after crushing a workout---together. 

Post workout sweaty selfie...aka everything to me <3 

Post workout sweaty selfie...aka everything to me <3 

Relate to this story at all and want to chat more? Feel free to reach out to me, I'd love to talk. 



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My name is Jena and I struggle with veggies.

Jena Chopson

Veggies. They take you back to the days of you staring at those greens on your plate with a face mixed with disgust and agony while the voice of your mother echoes in the background, “Eat your veggies, or no dessert for you!”

The truth is, even as an adult, I struggle to get my veggies in each day. I’d wager to say I’m not alone, right? For me, it’s not even that I don’t like veggies. I do. But I’m a woman of convenience, and to me, veggies just aren’t convenient.  Yes I’ll do the occasional raw carrots with hummus, or whip together a delicious salad, but after awhile, it all gets boring and well, why can’t veggies be as fun to grab and go like apples, bananas, and berries?

That’s why lately I am LOVING smoothies. Doesn’t the thought of a smoothie just invite you in? Maybe it’s my inner California hippie talking, but I love the thought of bringing a bunch of raw fruits and vegetables together for one harmonious blend of healthy deliciousness in a glass.

All you need is a nice blender (I LOVE my Ninja), some fresh produce, and a clear, beautiful glass (because let’s be honest, smoothies shine in mason jars and gorgeous glassware), and about 3-5 minutes of your time and WHAM—You have what might be your healthiest meal or snack of the day that includes VEGGIES.

If you’re on the veggie struggle bus like me, I invite you to give these a whirl. Your body will thank you for it.

This recipe eases you in with only 1 cup of spinach, but rest assured there’s plenty of other recipes out there with more servings of veggies.

Berry Beautiful (Can you tell I made this up?)
(Serves 1)

-1 cup spinach

-1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or cashew, or your base of choice)

-1/2 cup blueberries

-1/2 cup raspberries

-1 banana

-1 tbsp all natural peanut butter (or your nut butter of choice)

-1 tbsp ground flax seed

Blend spinach and almond milk first until smooth. Add remaining ingredients and blend thoroughly. Enjoy!

Until next time, fit friends.




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After the PR

Jena Chopson

Yesterday I ran the half-marathon at the Indianapolis Monumental half and achieved a 6-minute PR. If any of you are familiar with running, you know what kind of feat this is (I took nearly 30 seconds per mile off my pace). 

This did not happen overnight. This was the culmination of years of effort and work. I have been running off and on since high school, but more "seriously" since 2010. Even though I have been at it for 5 years, it wasn't until this summer when I realized something I should have known a long time ago: If I wanted to hit my goals, I needed to find a coach. 

As a health & fitness coach I often told myself I didn't need a coach. I could figure it out, right? It turns out, even the "experts" need coaches, too. The more research I did on successful people, the more I came to find that each and every one of them had coaches for different areas of their lives. It became clear that if I wanted to hit big running goals, then I needed a coach, too. 

So I approached someone who I felt would be a great fit for me as a running coach. Enter: Michael Scott (Look him up--Run Nerds Rock on Facebook. He is THE best). I told him I wanted to PR my half marathon at Indy Monumental in November.  He said let's do it.  After filling out a questionnaire on my running history, he drew up a training plan for me which I followed nearly to a T. In addition to a custom training plan, he provided the extra accountability and support that I definitely needed. 

Even though I had all the tools, I still wasn't perfect. I missed a couple of training runs. I had days where I felt like I failed miserably, and I had days where I felt like I nailed it. There were days when I didn't want to get out of bed and run 14 miles. There were days when I REALLY did not want to come home after clinical or a 12 hour shift and do a tempo run or a half-marathon paced run. 

But I made a commitment. I made this big goal for myself, and damnit, I wasn't going to let my excuses get in my way. So I stuck to the training plan, even when I didn't want to. 

This is what happens when you truly commit to something. When you check your excuses at the door and really go all in, you WILL achieve your goals. 

It won't be perfect. There will be days where you feel like a failure. But I promise, if you TRUST THE PROCESS and keep your heart set on your goals, you WILL achieve them. Yesterday felt amazing. I went into the race expecting to be gasping for breath the entire race, and I was surprised to feel 100% prepared. Yesterday I felt AMAZING. I crushed my goal pace for the majority of the race.  The training and the coaching PAID. OFF. The late nights, the pain, the early mornings, the moments of tears....they all PAID. OFF. 

I want you to know that I am here for you. I want you to achieve your goals. If you are struggling, reach out to me. If you need help with something, I am here.

As for me? I'm just getting started. The best thing about achieving something you never thought you could do is the realization that you can accomplish even MORE.  We were all made for God-sized dreams and I'm never going to stop chasing them. How about you? <3 


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