TAMILY TALES: Issue No. 11

TAMILY TALES: Issue No. 11
January 7, 2016 Aja Johnson

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TAMILY-Issue9

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We all make mistakes. It’s how we face those mistakes that matters. How we evolve from them, learn from them, and improve because of them. How we become aware of how making that mistake felt and then become allergic to that feeling. How we build the strength we need in order to become the cheerLEADER that we are capable of being, for both ourselves and for others, so that we can jump head-on into our purpose and succeed.

As Garth Brooks put it:

“LIFE IS NOT TRIED, IT IS MERELY SURVIVED,
IF YOU’RE STANDING OUTSIDE THE FIRE.”

To move forward, we must jump fully into that fire of life—and make sure we are jumping in in a consistent way. That means not making and breaking how you show up. It means not having that lack of awareness we can all have when we are having fun, but at others expense.

This week’s TAMily Tale has the glowing presence of an angel! To me, it appears as if Nadine (@nadineandrea13) came into this world all-loving and all-knowing. She is a true cheerLEADER and it makes me so proud that she not only shows up for her workouts with us, but is the most incredibly articulate and enthusiastic supporter!

All of my love,

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TAMILY-Issue9-nadineI am a typical Jersey Girl who had big hair in the 80’s and who loves all things Springsteen!  I was never the type to work out and I was lucky enough not to have to in order to stay thin.  My exercise of choice was running after my kids when they were little.  But then – BAM!!! My forties hit and within a three year span I faced both my parents passing away, terrible marital problems, and the realization that my kids were getting older and didn’t need (or want) as much hands-on time as they’d used to.  Low self-esteem, self-doubt and depression followed along with a 15 pound weight loss. It was an incredibly sad time. As my mourning subsided and my marriage improved, the 15 pounds returned but in different areas in which they’d left. I had always hated my butt, but now I had other areas to hate as well, such as my stomach and hips.  My self-esteem was very low and I just didn’t feel very good about myself.  I would look in the mirror and not like or even recognize who I was anymore.

I’m glad I had the thought that exercise might help.  I began waking up early every morning and doing workout tapes. After three months the commitment was there, but the changes in my body were not.  Luckily, it was right around this time that a fashion magazine arrived in the mail with Gwyneth Paltrow on the cover.  I don’t remember what movie Gwyneth was promoting at the time but she talked about her Tracy Anderson workout in the article.  I remember reading how she worked “damn hard” doing the Tracy Anderson Method and that she was in the best shape of her life. Something inside me clicked and I knew I wanted to try The Method.  My mom had always said “timing is everything” and she was right.  The magazine, and that article with Gwyneth arrived in my life exactly when I needed it to and it literally changed my life.

2351f61d-8416-4edb-a9ee-2921a88335b5 SOME #TAMILY MEMBERS WORKOUT IN THEIR LIVING ROOMS IN IOWA, OTHERS ON THEIR BALCONIES IN ITALY. WHEN AND WHERE DID YOU START #TAREALTIME?

I do my work out in a part of my basement I refer to as the Tamcave. I like to exercise early in the morning when the rest of the family is asleep.  I can be a procrastinator so it’s best for me to get it done and then go on with the rest of my day.

I was late to the streaming party!  I began doing the 30 Day Method in January 2014.  From there it was The Mat DVD, Perfect Design 1, 2, & 3 and Precision Toning before beginning Meta Glutecentric. I saw drastic changes in my body after three months of beginning The Method.  Any sign of muffin top was completely gone and my butt was tighter.  I was starting to feel good about myself again!

When Tracy launched the #TAREALTIME contest on Instagram, I was just beginning Month 7 of Continuity Glute and I didn’t feel I was ready for anything that Tracy had titled Master Class. But I joined Instagram anyway and decided to post my workout along with the streamers for fun.  I was very self-conscious at first, in fact my first post wasn’t of me at all, it was of my dog lying on my yoga mat. Tracy liked and commented on my post though, and that was all the encouragement I needed.  I started to post my workouts and I was amazed at how much support I received from all the women in the TA Instagram Community.  It was incredible!!!  I loved checking in with the women every day and watching the leg moves they were doing for the streaming workout.  I was in awe of @emm4tam and @kathryn_mpls and their commitment to the program. I decided to finish Year 1 of Continuity before starting to stream and as more women doing Continuity began to stream, it got tougher and tougher to hold out but I really wanted to finish what I had started.  Finally, in July 2015 I began to stream and I have to say, it is better than I ever could have imagined.  There is more arm work than in Continuity and the playlists that Tracy uses every week are fabulous.  I normally Shazam the music each week and then keep a playlist of my favorites.
    WE ALL FACE CHALLENGES WHEN IT COMES TO BEING OUR HEALTHIEST SELVES—INSIDE AND OUT. WHAT HAS BEEN THE HARDEST PART OF YOUR JOURNEY?
The hardest part for me is eating healthy.  I have a sweet tooth and it’s so hard for me to pass up any kind of cookie or chocolate.  I usually have a hidden stash of dark chocolate in one of my kitchen cabinets and I find having one piece a day of that helps with the craving.  But not always!!!!
   HAS BEING PART OF THE COMMUNITY OF #TAMILY WOMEN HELPED YOU TO OVERCOME THIS? HOW SO?
The Tamily community has certainly helped me. First, in knowing that I’m not alone, many of us have our food struggles so it helps to receive encouragement from people that are going through the same thing.  But in addition to that, many of the women post the meals that they are cooking that day and they show the tricks you can do to make a meal that would normally be unhealthy into something that’s good for you.  I don’t think @emery5 has ever posted something that I would not like to eat and it’s always healthy!!
    ONE OF THE COOL THINGS I LOVE ABOUT THE #TAMILY IS HOW IT CONNECTS WOMEN ALL OVER THE WORLD. HOW ARE YOU INSPIRED BY OTHER WOMEN? WHO IN THE #TAMILY INSPIRES YOU? HOW DO YOU CONNECT WITH OTHER WOMEN IN THE #TAMILY BOTH ON INSTAGRAM AND IN REAL LIFE?
Every woman who is part of the Tamily inspires me.  All of us show up every day for ourselves and are committed to the Tracy Anderson Method, which truly is “damn hard” but so rewarding!  Our bond started as the workout, but has developed into something so much more.  We share stories about our families, we celebrate each other’s victories and offer encouragement when needed.  Beginners are welcomed with open arms and it’s a place for inspiration every day.

As someone who works out early, I love knowing that @ek4tam, @clinsay, @silvercontinent and @leitza612 are probably streaming too.  I love the words of wisdom that @emery 5, @shanmasters and @wisperingwillow have to offer and the joy that radiates from @gilliancory and @monica_duarte on a daily basis.  And then there are our true beauties like @lorettasfitnesslife, @lyminatam, @tiffany_ann and @mama_chahba who are so elegant in the way they move and perform dance cardio.  I would love to dance like any one of them!!

Besides connecting on Instagram, many of us communicate using WhatsApp and some of us even text or call one another.   I love waking up every morning and checking in with everyone like @jdoak15, @jsherman811 and @shaina4tam.  It’s amazing how Instagram has created such true friendships!

  LIKE MOST WOMEN I KNOW, YOU ARE BUSY! WHAT TIPS DO YOU HAVE FOR FITTING WORKOUTS INTO A HECTIC LIFESTYLE?

Honestly, you just have to make time for it and do it!  I like to workout at 5:30am because that way it is done and nothing that happens during the day can interfere with it.  It took me a few months to get accustomed to it but now I love it.  No one else in my house is awake so it’s truly “me” time.  I also need to finish by 7:30 so I can drive my daughter to school which eliminates the ability to take breaks so I really have to push through the difficult moves.

  ONE THING THE #TAMILY HAS IS STYLE. WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE OUTFIT TO EXERCISE IN?
I’m not really picky about what I workout in as long as it’s comfortable and it matches, right down to my socks and sneakers!!  Sometimes I am not able to match my sneakers and it bothers me so much!!!  I always lay out my clothes the night before so I don’t have to think about it in the morning and for some reason which I don’t remember it became a habit for me to sleep with my hair tie around my wrist. I guess it’s like some kind of mental reminder that I will be streaming first thing in the morning!I normally buy whatever leggings are on sale and I recently bought a pair of Candida Maria leggings at the suggestion of @agikonwalia which I love.  I will need to buy some more!

  WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE TA MOMENT?
My favorite TA moment had to be the weekend in NYC that I spent with so many members of the Tamily.  The entire weekend felt like a dream and as if I was living my life inside my Instagram account!  I must have had a smile on my face the entire weekend; believe me when I say that all the girls were so kind and even more beautiful than they appear on Instagram; it was truly mind-boggling!!!  The first night a group of us went out for dinner and right at the end @agikonwalia and @melissarigdon walked into the restaurant and all of us just went wild!!!  Agi took us on a tour of the city that night and I just remember sitting in the car thinking this can’t be happening!  I must be dreaming!!  Later that night @catynasr and I stayed up past 2am talking as if we’d known each other for years!!

Meeting Tracy the next day was everything I’d dreamt it would be.  All of us were so excited in the locker room, just smiling and hugging each other, jumping up and down! And all the people that work at the Tribeca Studio were so nice and friendly to us.  When Tracy walked into the studio it was just really magical and emotional. Tracy is so genuine and so real and it’s obvious she cares about everyone who follows her Method.  She wanted to make sure she answered everyone’s questions and made us feel so special.  I have to say, I was pretty tongue-tied the whole time so I’m glad a lot of the other ladies had great questions to ask!  Tracy also knew many of us from our Instagram accounts which I think is pretty amazing!

That day I was able to work out between @shanmasters and @gippersmith with @gilliancory in front of me wearing her Minnie Mouse ears. The energy in the room was incredible!  I wish every lady who posts on Instagram could have been there that day and I highly recommend attending a Vitality Week if you can.  A HUGE thank you to @emery5, @morgenschick and Tracy Anderson for that weekend.  All of you have a very special place in my heart.

  IT’S ALL ABOUT BALANCE. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE PRE-WORKOUT MEAL? FAVORITE INDULGENCE?

I don’t have a pre-workout meal because I exercise so early in the morning.  I always have a large glass of water with me in my Tamcave and if I feel like it, I might have some tea also.

My favorite indulgence is crème brulee.  If it’s on the menu you can be sure I will be ordering it!

  HOW ELSE DO YOU FIND BALANCE IN YOUR DAILY LIFE?
I’m not exactly sure I do find balance!!  But taking the time for myself in the beginning of the day certainly helps.  It is my nature to put my family’s needs first; whether that means carpooling my daughter around at last minute’s notice, or making multiple grocery store runs during the day to make sure everyone has what they like to eat in the house.  It isn’t normal for me to say “Hey! This is what I need!”  I’m a work in progress on balance.
CAN YOU SHARE YOUR FAVORITE POST-WORKOUT RECIPE FOR THE REST OF THE #TAMILY TO ENJOY?
Post-workout is always a protein drink – either Tracy’s Wellness Formula Vanilla or Vega Sport Chocolate.  I mix them with water and a teaspoon of Great Lakes gelatin and drink it in the car as I drive my daughter to school.  Afterwards I have a cup of coffee with my husband, no sugar and a tiny drop of organic milk in it.
 ALL RIGHT, HERE’S A FREE PASS TO BRAG: IN ADDITION TO THE SUCCESS OF STICKING WITH IT, WHAT PROGRESS HAVE YOU MADE SINCE YOU STARTED #TAREALTIME AND BECAME PART OF THE #TAMILY, BOTH PHYSICALLY AND MENTALLY?
Although my outer self has certainly changed since TAREALTIME, I believe it’s my inner self that has changed the most.  My self-esteem has returned and I’m more positive about life in general.  Tracy often says “be your best YOU” and that has changed my thinking in so many ways. It’s such a simple statement but in today’s world it means so much.  Women need to stop comparing themselves to others and to be accepting of themselves.  It took me many years to get to this point but it certainly brings some peace of mind.  Tracy has gotten my body into amazing shape but I will never look like a 5’10” supermodel and THAT’S OKAY!
 WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR BODY? WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR INTERNAL SELF? 
I love how strong my body has become!  I never thought I’d be able to do 1 plank and now I can do more than 30!! My arms have been totally reshaped, I receive comments on them on Instagram a lot. And for the first time since I can remember, I no longer despise my rear.  Tracy’s Continuity and Streaming have raised it and made it smaller, thank you Tracy!!!  Her method is just absolute genius and I will never doubt anything she has us do because it works.  I love that my internal self has become more accepting of the things that make me an individual; it’s a lot easier living life when you’re happy with yourself!  There is no such thing as perfection and there’s a certain peace that comes with realizing that.  The Tamily has helped a lot with that as well because we are accepting of each other all the time.
WHAT MESSAGE DO YOU HAVE FOR WOMEN WHO ARE STRUGGLING WITH THEIR HEALTH AND BODY IMAGE?
  If you’re struggling with health and body image, realize you aren’t alone.  Many people struggle.  If you are willing to commit and do the work, change is possible.  It’s a journey though and won’t happen overnight.  Be patient with yourself, but also be disciplined.  Don’t make excuses for yourself, instead show up for yourself and you will see results.  Join Instagram and follow the Tamily for inspiration and encouragement.  And lastly, make sure you are changing for yourself, not because someone like a spouse or parent wants you to.  Unless you are truly doing it for you, the change won’t stick.
ALL PHOTOS PROVIDED BY MONICA. FOLLOW HER ON INSTAGRAM @NADINEANDREA13

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QUICK FETTUCINE CACCIATORE
This is my son’s favorite meal so I always make it when he’s home from college.

INGREDIENTS:
8 oz fettucine, any type
2 tsp olive oil
1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, chopped
1 cup each sliced green peppers and sliced mushrooms
1 can diced tomatoes, undrained
¼ cup Italian dressing
½ cup chopped fresh basil leaves

DIRECTIONS:
Cook pasta as directed on package.  Meanwhile, heat oil in large skillet on medium-high heat.  Add chicken; cook and stir until no longer pink. Add peppers and mushrooms; cook 3 minutes.

Stir in tomatoes with their liquid and the dressing.  Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer 5 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.

Toss pasta with chicken mixture and sprinkle with basil.

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FLUSH THE FAT AWAY VEGETABLE SOUP

INGREDIENTS:
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1” cubes
1 medium zucchini sliced into 1” round pieces
3 carrots, peeled and sliced
1 stalk celery, diced
1 small onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
Kosher or sea salt to taste
½ tsp black pepper
1/8 tsp allspice
1 tsp paprika
1 bay leaf
2 can black beans, rinsed and drained
2 cups vegetable broth, low-sodium
1 can diced tomatoes, no salt added
4 cups baby spinach, loosely packed

DIRECTIONS:
Add all ingredients, except spinach, to the slow cooker.  Cover and cook on low 6-8 hours (or on high 3-4 hours) or until the vegetables are tender.  Add spinach, stir and continue cooking until wilted, about 5 minutes.

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FAVORITE CURRENT QUOTE:

“THE ONLY PERSON YOU ARE DESTINED TO BECOME IS THE PERSON YOU DECIDE TO BE.”
-RALPH WALDO EMERSON

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FAVORITE ALL-TIME QUOTE:

“WHEN THINGS GO WRONG, AS THEY SOMETIMES WILL
WHEN THE ROAD YOU’RE TRUDGING SEEMS ALL UPHILL,
WHEN THE FUNDS ARE LOW AND THE DEBTS ARE HIGH,
AND YOU WANT TO SMILE, BUT YOU HAVE TO SIGH,
WHEN CARE IS PRESSING YOU DOWN A BIT –
REST IF YOU MUST, BUT DON’T YOU QUIT.


SUCCESS IS FAILURE TURNED INSIDE OUT –
THE SILVER TINT OF THE CLOUDS OF DOUBT,
AND YOU NEVER CAN TELL HOW CLOSE YOU ARE,
IT MAY BE NEAR WHEN IT SEEMS AFAR;
SO STICK TO THE FIGHT WHEN YOU’RE HARDEST HIT –
IT’S WHEN THINGS SEEM WORST THAT YOU MUSTN’T QUIT.”

-AUTHOR UNKNOWN BUT MY MOM ALWAYS HAD THIS HANGING ON HER REFRIGERATOR.

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CURRENT FAVORITE BOOK:
The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

ALL-TIME FAVORITE BOOK:
Angel Wisdom: 365 Meditations and Insights from the Heavens by Terry Lynn Taylor and Mary Beth Crain (this is always on my nightstand)

CURRENT FAVORITE MOVIE:

The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 (seen as a Mother/Daughter Date Night)

 

ALL-TIME FAVORITE MOVIES:
It’s A Wonderful Life

 

ADVICE NADINE WOULD PASS ONTO YOUNG WOMEN THAT SHE WISH SHE HAD KNOWN EARLIER ON IN LIFE:
Time moves fast so don’t waste it being unhappy.  Find what you love to do and do it!  Be kind to yourself, accept yourself.  Take care of your body, it’s the only one you have!  Avoid junk food as much as you can.  And show your smile to the world!!!

Categorized under #TAMILY TALES, Blog