Have you ever asked yourself what does it take to be a personal trainer? Sure, maybe you considered the certification test, but have you considered the day-to-day lifestyle of a personal trainer? I’m going to tell you a bit more. I’m going to get personal, invite you into my average daily routine between work, food, training, and sleep, and offer some advice on preparing for busy work days so you too can live a balanced life.
I try to change my alarm ringtone every three weeks. I trick myself into thinking it will be more pleasant to hear. However, the sound usually interrupts my REM cycle and the high chimes, constellations, or crystals are disruptive and startling. Recently I discovered that I can choose a song from my iTunes library. Have you discovered this alarm setting yet? I highly suggest it! Waking up to Mos Def “Beautiful” helps, but this part of my day is admittedly still a challenge!
I’ve created a routine that helps my mornings run smoother. Before bed, I put my keys where I can remember them, clothes out, and eat one of my prepared nourishing meals (next week I’ll be sharing recipes for omnivores and list of tools necessary for nutritious food prep!). If I have everything set out and ready for my day I don’t have to try and figure out what I’m going to eat or wear when I’m starting to gather my thoughts and wake up first thing. I’m all about easy.
My friends who are early risers: Taking the time the night before to organize yourself for the next day will give you a better piece of mind in the morning, with less rushing and more time to be in the moment. You may even find yourself available for a little time for yourself!
5:15am: Departure. Brie on wheels!
I ride my “refrigerator” on wheels aka my 1995 Fuji hybrid bicycle, from Williamsburg to Pongo Power in Park Slope. I see the view of the Willi-B as I pass underneath the underpass on Kent Ave.
Fresh air and exercise; it blows waiting for the subway in the sweltering heat out of the water! However, I usually encounter the 5:00am garbage truck pick up, not so fresh.
6:00am: Work. I love my job! Thank god.
As a personal trainer, I have the privilege to educate people about their bodies. It is my responsibility to instruct clients how to develop strength and balance, so that they can live life aware of how they move. I also teach people how to find joy through movement through unconventional exercises, like swinging steel to build abs!
Seriously, if you want to try something new and add some fun to your routine while getting stronger; check out the Clubbell!
I see people transform in one hour and help them discover just how powerful they are. People you are machines, and the beautiful thing about you is that you continue to grow and develop each day based off of your experiences. Ok this is deep, I know, take it as you will, but remember one thing:
12:00pm: Shift Shape! It’s lunchtime and I’m already done with my workday.
Well, on most days. Since I love my work, I often stay beyond my set schedule and take on additional work-related responsibilities. I’m constantly on the pursuit of discovering “better.” I research articles, refine my clients programs, collaborate with colleagues, and dig in the crates!
Once the cerebral work is through, it’s time for me to get physical. I change out of my spandex leggings and switch over into a baggy cotton oversized tee shirt and loose fitting wind pants. You may know that my version of physical fitness is more like crawling and stepping with my feet and hands, forearm stands, gymnastics ring pull ups, clubbell swinging, and spinning on my back to breakbeats, boom baps and drum kicks. I’m a “breakdancer” or B-Girl. I travel to the South Bronx once a week and train with my Coach, B-girl Rokafella who has been breakdancing since the early 90’s and is a trailblazer for this dance. She empowers women, like me, and young girls all over the world through her movement and mentorship through dance and hip hop culture.
I train with my coach once a week for one hour. On Wednesdays I dance for three hours the larger breakdance community at McCarren park. If you are ever in Williamsburg on a Wednesday night from 8:00pm-11:00pm and are interested in seeing some breakdancing, I invite you to stop by the Track and field and see us getting down! Many of our neighbors stop to watch.
.2:00pm Chef Brie.
I get home and I’m hungry again. I have two options. I can choose to wait to eat until I become ravenous and end up grabbing something packed with sugar within my eyesight… Or I can eat when I’m initially hungry and grab a quick nourishing meal I’ve prepared ahead of time. I prefer to choose the latter. Bottom line, If I don’t have any food prepared I need to make it. I prefer to eat home cooked meals because I’m confident that I can properly nourish my body with a balanced meal full of mostly organic and natural ingredients and spend $5-$9 per meal.
My meals include 4-6oz lean fat protein, 1 green vegetable, 1 sweet potato, squash, or brown rice, a handful of greens, ¼-½ avocado, and 1tbs of olive oil or nuts. Basically this is 1 protein, 2 vegetables, 1 fat, and all the greens my heart desires. It’s really basic and I feel great after eating. In fact, my diet has transformed my ability to keep up with my busy lifestyle, feel strong in training, and has kept me in really good shape.
8:00pm-11:30pm: Cool Down.
Some nights are later than others, but what is important is that I continue to maintain my sleep bank. A sleep bank is like a saving account. For example I must always have at least $300 in my saving account, if I don’t I will be charged a fee. The same applies to my sleep. If I don’t have enough time spent sleeping in my week I will be deprived, weak, moody, and tired. Sometimes it’s ok to pull from the sleep bank in order to stay up late and dance. In fact this keeps me happy, but I know that I must make up for missed time by sleeping additional hours the next night.
Similar to restorative sleep it is also equally important for me to spend quality time with my boyfriend, Mike. To be honest, sometimes it’s hard to make time for anyone other than myself. It is easy for me to become distracted with my thoughts and become overwhelmed with work-related tasks. He is a great friend to me and he is always there as a sounding board for my thoughts and has really great advice. We also fill our time together with walks around North Williamsburg, dance practice (he is also a breakdancer), various Netflix series and trips to the Italian bakery. Yes, I do indulge in sweets! But only 25% of the time…
I’m happy with this simple life I live.