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Weekend: Growth, Love & Transformation

My weekend was full of celebration including the final weekend of yoga teacher training and graduation, a friend’s baby shower and the grand opening of Metro Fitness 51. My weekend was also full of reflection about how much growth, change and transformation is constantly happening around us (and within us).


I stayed in on Friday night after teaching two yoga classes and training three clients back to back. I needed couch and quiet time before a busy and social weekend ahead. I cooked filet marsala with mashed red potatoes and broccolini.


I got up early Saturday morning to run before teaching my 9:30 a.m. hot vinyasa class at Om Yoga. It was unseasonably cool and around 47 degrees when I left to run so I brought Sullie along. I’m so proud to report that she ran three miles with me and was full of energy for the whole run. I think that’s pretty good given she’s less than two months away from her eighth birthday. Always grateful for time with my girl.


After teaching yoga I got all dressed up for a friend’s baby shower. I promptly headed to the mimosa table after giving my beautiful and glowing friend a big hug.


And I have to share a picture of the cake. How sweet it was!


I stopped by Sunflour for a soy latte on my way to yoga teacher training for the rest of the afternoon. I had to lead a section of the training so I needed a little pick me up after a mimosa. I took the trainees through a 30 minute lesson on how to use a lacrosse ball for trigger point therapy and myofascial release. We started at the feet and worked our way all the way up the body. I wish I had a recording of all the sound effects we had going on in the room. I am going to work to get some video tutorials posted here on my blog for different areas of the body.


And then I had the privilege of taking two classes led by trainees. As part of the final stages of training they took turns leading 20 minute segments of classes and taught all of their peers and we gave feedback after. I had flashbacks to when I was in their shoes three years ago.


Saturday night I attended the grand opening party for Metro Fitness 51. We just opened our third location in South Charlotte that is offering CrossFit, kickboxing and circuit training classes. Charlotte readers, let me know if you’re interested in trying some free classes!


And Sunday was the final day of eight weekends and 200 hours of training for the teacher trainees. I have to take a moment to talk about this. It is a very special thing to go from student to teacher. And even more special when you actually become a student’s first teacher. Since completing teacher training a little over three years ago, I have had the honor of being several of my own student’s “first teacher” who then inspired and encouraged them to go on to complete teacher training.


I feel so grateful that I was able to assist with this teacher training. Ever since I completed my first fitness certification over six years ago, I’ve wanted to teach teachers. Teaching is probably the thing in life that I am most passionate about and it absolutely lights me up to do it. I want to not only teach my students but also train other teachers to become the best teachers possible. This group of teacher trainees further enforced that I know this is what I want to do.

They dug deep and pushed themselves so far out of their comfort zones. I can’t even describe to you how much transformation took place over the course of these 200 hours and how amazing it was to see unfold. The comparison between the first weekend of training when they sat in a circle talking about why they were there and then freaked out over leading a sun salutation A the next day versus the last weekend seeing them stand in their power and confidently command a classroom was crazy powerful. I will never forget this group of yogis and I cannot wait to continue to work with them to help them develop as teachers and to take their classes!

Let me wipe away my tears now… 🙂 (No really.)


We had teacher training graduation on Sunday night at Vivace.


Complete with the cutest yoga cookies you’ve ever seen!

What a weekend. My heart is full. Babies, business growth, new yoga teachers and living passion.

{ 26 comments… add one }
  • Sarah May 19, 2014, 10:30 am

    Jen, I live in South Charlotte and would definitely be interested in trying some free classes at the new Metro. I am glad you had a really wonderful weekend!

  • Jenn May 19, 2014, 11:23 am

    As I sit here on my lacrosse ball (as instructed by my massage therapist), I eagerly await your tutorials for trigger point therapy and myofascial release. 🙂

  • Penny May 19, 2014, 11:36 am

    It sounds like you had a very busy and productive weekend. I was wondering if you could post a recipe for the filet marsala. It looks delicious.

  • Sara Milton May 19, 2014, 11:45 am

    Hey Jen,

    First, love reading your blog! I am wondering if you could tell me why you have chosen Om Yoga and Y2 as your studio of choice in the Charlotte area. What are your opinions on Yoga One and any other yoga studios in Charlotte?


    • Jen May 19, 2014, 9:57 pm

      hi sarah! thanks for the comment and the question. i started practicing at charlotte yoga years ago with suzanne bergen. i still love charlotte yoga and practice there when i can and refer people to suzanne regularly. i don’t practice there more because i can practice for free at Y2 and om because i teach there. i don’t teach at CY because they have a policy that teachers cannot teach at any other studio if you teach there. otherwise, i would love to teach at CY.

      i initially started practicing at Y2 because of the expansive schedule offered and challenging hot vinyasa classes. i ended up doing my teacher training at Y2 three years ago and started teaching there after TT. it feels like a “home” to me and i consider many of my students and fellow teachers to be “family.” it’s an amazing community.

      i picked up classes at Om Yoga about six months ago just because i wanted to branch out and teach at a smaller and more intimate studio. i love teaching there because the yogis are so reverent and eager to learn. it’s extremely rewarding.

      i have only visited yoga one a couple of times. it’s on the complete opposite side of town from where i live and takes me 20+ minutes to get there. i rarely visit plaza midwood. that’s my main reason for not practicing there.

      we are SO LUCKY in charlotte to live in a city full of amazing yoga. there are so many other studios. i can’t tell you how many students have moved away or traveled and said they can’t find yoga like we have here. we are blessed!

      let me know if you have any other questions.

  • Danielle May 19, 2014, 11:45 am

    I live near South Charlotte, I would love to try some classes! I LOVE your blog and all your weekly fitness recaps motivate me!!!

    • Jen May 19, 2014, 9:51 pm

      great! i will email you the info!

  • Kelsie May 19, 2014, 12:30 pm

    I LOVE that MK bag! Do you know what the name/style of it is?

    • Jen May 19, 2014, 9:48 pm

      i do not, i got it at nordstrom rack so it was going out of season! 🙁

  • She Rocks Fitness May 19, 2014, 12:32 pm

    Oh Sullie….So glad she is strong enough to run still. She’s so precious and makes me smile BIG every time you post a picture of her…Congrats to all the yogis for completing their training! XOXO

  • Brittany @ Proteinandpumps May 19, 2014, 2:02 pm

    Beautiful post. TT is definitely a life-changing experience. I’d love to be on the “teaching teachers” end of things some day!

    • Jen May 19, 2014, 9:47 pm

      i have so loved reading about your experience. keep sharing!

  • Heather @ girlyeverafter May 19, 2014, 3:50 pm

    I love the moments that validate our passions and reinforce that we’re on the right path. Sounds like a very fulfilling weekend!

  • Danietta May 19, 2014, 4:49 pm

    I live minutes away from the new Metro51 fitness and would love to try some classes.

    • Jen May 19, 2014, 9:44 pm

      i will email you with some info!

  • Samantha @ The Faithful Runner May 19, 2014, 6:21 pm

    I think it’s so great that you can take Sullie out for your runs with you. Great job with all of your training and progress. It must feel great to have accomplished so much. 🙂

    • Jen May 19, 2014, 9:43 pm

      only occasionally these days but grateful for each one that she can join me on! walking is more her style these days! 🙂

  • Jojo @ RunFastEatLots May 19, 2014, 7:49 pm

    Those yoga cookies are awesome!

    I’ve worked as a teacher (academic, not yoga), so I know how rewarding it can be! That’s great that you were part of someone’s journey to become a teacher 😀

  • Courtney Monaco May 19, 2014, 9:07 pm

    I went through teacher training several years ago though the Asheville Yoga Center and while I never really intended to teach, and haven’t much since going through training, I would do it again in a heartbeat. It was one of the most incredible experiences of my life! I come to your yoga classes every so often (is that creepy?! Don’t answer that…) and I know you don’t know me, but your blog and your classes are inspiring! Some of us are meant to teach, and you very much are Jen! Thanks for sharing it with us.

    • Jen May 19, 2014, 9:42 pm

      hey courtney – i’m so happy to hear that you had a great experience with the AYC TT. i have considered doing my 500hr there. i am going to do a prenatal training there this summer. can’t wait. it’s my favorite place to go to get away and take classes outside of charlotte. have you tried the bhakti classes with michael johnson? love!

      it’s totally NOT weird that you come to my class and i’m so happy that you took the time to leave a comment with your kind words. THANK YOU!

      • Courtney Monaco May 20, 2014, 8:44 am

        I have a friend who recently finished her 500 hour at AYC and loved the experience! I haven’t been to the bhakti classes but will have to look into it. I LOVE going up there for yoga weekends – between the yoga and the food in Asheville, I’m not sure there’s a much better place to spend a relaxing weekend!!!

        Thanks again for all you do!

  • Ashley May 19, 2014, 9:48 pm

    Such an inspiring post. Your enthusiasm for fitness and overall sense of well being is contagious in a very good way, so thank you for that. I was actually looking at the metro fitness website the other day because I’ve been looking to add some variety and challenge to my workouts besides my yoga/walk/running routine. I live in south charlotte and would love to try some free classes!

    • Jen May 19, 2014, 10:00 pm

      awesome ashley! i’ll email you with some details!

  • Eva May 20, 2014, 8:42 am

    awesome post! so happy for you for getting all those yogis through 🙂 it’s my goal to train to become a yoga teacher in the next few years. i’m curious about your experience– how many “advanced” poses could you do before training to be a teacher? i know that’s not the point of training, but i’m curious “what level” of yoga you were already at before going into training.

  • Lisa May 20, 2014, 9:13 pm

    Your weekend sounds wonderful! Your workouts are so motivational. I would love to try out Metro 51.

  • Cassie May 21, 2014, 8:51 am

    Those yoga cookies are BEYOND adorable!!!

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