Categorized as: Trainer Blog

Trainer Blog 2019

Ever since I was a little kid, I have been interested in science. I had dreams of being a marine biologist, and then a pediatrician, and occasionally thought about the idea of being a nutritionist. Ultimately, life led me in the direction of becoming a research chemist and I have spent most of my career working in the field of drug discovery trying to develop new medicines to treat neurological diseases. My love for fitness, health, and wellness also led me to pursue a degree in nutrition and I have spent the last decade researching the science behind nutrition so I could personally determine what is the “best way to eat”. Can anyone even determine that?? If you google a few key words regarding diet or nutrition, chances are you will be inundated with websites completely contradicting each other. Should I do Keto? Paleo? Vegan? Intermittent Fasting? Low calorie? Low carb? AHHHHHHH!!!!!!

One topic of nutrition I have always been interested in is how to use food as medicine. Ironically, I work in the field of developing new pharmaceuticals and in my spare time I try to figure out how to avoid them! 😉 One topic I began researching was the idea of eating alkaline. It made perfect sense – the research chemist trying to figure out how food impacts the chemical processes of our body and if this can have a positive or negative effect on our overall health. Sounds like a thesis in the making! Let me try to break down what “eating alkaline” means.
If you go back to your middle school chemistry lesson on acids and bases, you may remember acids are defined as having a pH < 7 and bases have a pH > 7 and a pH = 7 is defined as neutral. The pH of the blood is exactly 7.41, or slightly basic. Another word for basic is alkaline. So the pH of blood is slightly alkaline. The pH of the blood cannot change even a little bit. Sometimes there is misinformation about food making the blood acidic but this is impossible or you would die. Your body must maintain this slightly alkaline pH of 7.41 to survive, so the question is: do the foods we eat cause the body to have to work harder to maintain this pH? Since the blood pH cannot fluctuate, the body must go through processes to constantly maintain it (or in chemistry to buffer it) by pulling buffering agents out of the bones, kidneys, and lungs. These agents are calcium, magnesium, bicarbonate ions, and carbon dioxide. Are you still with me?

In other words, the foods we eat have an impact on the body (acidic or alkaline) and when this effect is strongly acidic, the body must divert energy to keep the blood pH at 7.41. Do we want to eat the foods that make the body work harder to stay at its happy spot? That sounds tiring! And what are these foods the research studies say overwork our body by creating an acidic effect? The simple answer is summarized in this list: Sugar, Meat, Dairy, Grains, Processed Foods, Refined Flours, Artificial Sweeteners, and Oil. What are the foods that have an alkaline effect on the body? Basically – FRUITS AND VEGGIES. Your Mom was right – eat your veggies!

I have been following a whole-food plant-based diet (95% vegan) for over a year, but this is not the complete answer for everyone. Achieving a plant-base in your diet is still possible while including other high-quality animal-based foods. The answer is, and always has been, MODERATION. I have seen amazing success with clients moving towards a whole-food plant-based diet (and yes they still eat meat too!). The premise of a whole-food plant-base diet (or eating more alkaline) came from the great scholar Hippocrates

~ Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food ~
This describes the theory of consuming the vitamins, minerals, fiber, phytonutrients, and fatty acids naturally found in these foods in order to support weight loss and reduce the risks (or reverse the effects) of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, arthritis, inflammation, auto-immune diseases, and of course cancer. In fact, the main reason I pursued a whole-food plant-based alkaline diet was for the anti-cancer benefits after losing my Mother to this horrible disease in 2014.

The next question is: HOW? How do you start thinking about food as thy medicine and incorporating these healthy habits into your diet? It starts with whole food. Try to consume meals that have less than 8 ingredients (i.e. eggs, spinach, tomato, onion, avocado, sweet potato, salt, pepper). How does that compare to one piece of toast in your breakfast and how many ingredients are listed on the bread package (at least 15!!!!)? The next step is adding vegetables to EVERY SINGLE MEAL. The greener the veggie, the higher the nutrient factor! Start tossing greens in protein shakes, soups, pasta sauces, breakfast casseroles, or the obvious answer is to eat more salads loaded with a variety of greens and herbs!

Increase the amount of vegetables you eat with meals by roasting large trays in the oven for the week so they are ready to go on busy weeknights. I have recently started roasting veggies in vegetable stock to eliminate processed oils and as it turns out it’s easy, delicious and more nutritious! Buy colorful raw veggies like carrots, tomatoes, peppers, snap peas, and radishes and add as an afternoon snack. Try to reduce or eliminate refined sugars and get reacquainted with nature’s candy – fruit. Try to reduce the amount of processed oils you cook with and introduce other ways to eat fats through whole foods like avocado, coconut, nuts, seeds, flax, or hemp. Invest in high-quality animal products like organic eggs, grass-fed organic beef, organic poultry, or wild-caught fish. Lastly, start small but start soon.

Developing a whole-food plant-based diet can be customized to your lifestyle, your needs, and your tastes. Research shows it has a positive effect on the body and that brings me back to the concept of alkaline or acidic foods. The truth is I don’t know if there is sound evidence to show how the chemical breakdown of food causes the body to work harder to maintain blood pH. But the fact is how can we argue with the suggestion to eat more plants??? How can we argue with the notion that whole foods are more nutritious than processed foods??? This is not new science!! It’s almost common sense, but the on-the-go American lifestyle has created a culture of relying on processed convenience foods, often disguised as nutritious substitutes. Are convenient processed foods the answer to improved longevity and disease prevention? NO! The last time I looked, the banana came in an easy, convenient, on-the-go package 😊

It’s time to take health into our own hands and that starts with grabbing those veggies! Go forth and heal my Friends…..

-Coach Ali Gregro

The Power of your Mind

For those of you who have gotten to know me during your time at re:Move, you know that I am an endurance athlete. From swimming the mile in college, to competing in 140.6 mile triathlons, if someone else said “Thats too long”, I said “Sign me up!”. I have always found that one of the unique but critical aspects to being successful as an endurance athlete is the ability to focus on the immediate, but do it in the context of your larger goal. Trust me, world champion Ironman triathletes don’t just count down 140.6 miles one mile at a time. Only 139 more miles to go… HA! You have to set short term goals, be able to be positive but brutally honest with yourself, and know you can successfully take the next step because you have already taken successful steps in the past. I find that adapting this “Endurance Mindset” that makes long distance athletes successful in their sports can make each of us successful in our daily lives. To help you, here are a few key tenants to living an “Endurance Mindset”

1. Know that life is going to be a journey, you are going to have some amazing days and you are going to have some days when you really need a glass of wine. Get through today, and know that tomorrow is a new day and a clean slate.

2. Focus on your now, be present, and be purposeful. If you start thinking about the long journey ahead you cannot focus on the few things that are in your control right now. These are the little things that will make a big difference and determine if you succeed or fail.

3. Give it your all! Wake up and give every day 100%, and know that todays 100% may be less than yesterday, but that doesn’t mean you should give up and not try. As the Dali Lama said, “Be the change you want to see.”

4. Refuel your willingness to fight for yourself, because you are so important and loved. Too many times we give away all of your good vibes to others and we save nothing for ourselves. Athletes start every race by envisioning themselves crossing the finish line, and achieving their goal. We can do this by starting every day by filling ourselves with positives and goodness, and then watching these good vibes spill into all areas of our lives.

5. Don’t consume what makes you feel weak. If it doesn’t encourage you and it doesn’t make you feel good, avoid it. No, I am not talking about eating brussels sprouts. I am talking about internalizing the opinions and judgments of others. Many times we struggle with other’s perceptions of us, when we really need to just focus on running our own race. We need to remember that these individuals are not fighting our battles, and they are not traveling the same roads. We should not mentally give them them the power to tell us how to live or worry what they may think. I would bet that a lot of our anxiety comes from us worrying about pleasing others or what they might think of us. As long as you are sticking to your plan and making progress, you are successful. Period!

6. STOP comparing yourself to others. It slows you down and it messes with your mind. None of us traveled the same path to get here, and we are all so beautifully unique and special in our own ways. Celebrate your friends victories and cheer her on, then put your head down and go back to work. You have no idea what mountains she had to climb to get to where she is today. You didn’t start at the same place and your are not going to the same place so focus on yourself and your accomplishments. Becoming what you want to be has to come from you, from deep inside of you. I swam competitively for several years and one thing my swim coach told us was to never turn your head to look at the person in the lane next to you. You become less stream lined in the water, your thoughts get distracted, self doubt creeps in and you loose focus on your goal.

7. You are your biggest asset or your greatest obstacle. WOW, this one is so powerful for me and I totally stole it from Rachel Hollis. I am certainly guilty of this myself, bad self talk. Do you think an olympic athlete wins a gold medal by starting a race thinking “I’m too slow to win this race…”? So why do you keep telling yourself that you are fat, or that there is no way you can complete that task? The mind is a powerful tool, and when you repeatedly tell it good or bad it starts to believe and makes it comes true. I had a coach once work with us on visualization techniques before a race. Days before your race/event you meditate and go over and over in your mind how each stroke (its swimming people) looks, how your hand will propel you forward and push the water backward, how you will pick up your turnover as you dig deep and finish strong. You focus on the time you want to achieve and how it feels. You burn it into your memory and then when you actually get to the race, your mind just knows what to do and you know how it will end.

Success is deliberate, and is achieved by doing the small things and making positive choices every day. Remember your mindset and words have power, so much power! Be positive, be purposeful, and be kind to yourself and those around. Every day you must set your mindset for the day, the week, and your lifetime to come. And remember, there are all of those tiny humans everywhere watching how you treat yourself and learning how they should treat themselves. Success is never ending.

-Coach Nettie Boyle

Trainer Blog 2019

Do you remember the TV show GLEE? When that show came out, I felt like I was watching a bit into my teenage life. I was that “sports jock” that was also a thespian and choral performer. When I was in college, I sang briefly with a small acoustic group. I wore my scrunchie ponytail with my baggie boyfriend jeans and white tank top…come on, it was the 90’s. Granted it only lasted a semester until my golf coach reminded me where my tuition money came from…😬😬😬oops!

You may be wondering why I am sharing this ANCIENT history…It’s an example of just one story, of one person that makes up this AWESOME community of athletes.

​​💥CHALLENGE: Share a “FUN FACT” below in the comments.💥

There are hundreds of gyms in the Middle-Tennessee area. They are filled with great trainers, training equipment, classes and people looking to improve their fitness level.

With all of that said, it is my opinion that what makes our culture of excellence special is the amazing community of people that genuinely care about each other. Health and fitness is a journey and like any purposeful journey it’s the relationships you form along the way that will keep you focused, encouraged and returning.

One of my favorite things is to hear ALL the stories. I love to see the pics of get togethers you all post inside our 4 walls and outside of them. It is fun to watch your triumphs and goals accomplished. At the same time, I love to hear the struggles as we come together to help you overcome and succeed.

🙏”A man who isolates himself seeks his own desires; he rages against all wise judgement.” Proverbs 18:1🙏

I am not here to tell you that one workout can change your life. I am saying that in one workout:
■ You may say something encouraging to someone who’s dad just passed the week before.
■ You may have someone tell you they are, “Glad you are here,” on a day that you feel incredibly lonely.
■ You may accomplish something you NEVER thought you could.
■ You may meet someone for the first time that becomes one of your FAVES.
■ You may have a resource that can help another to overcome a need or challenge.
■ You may hear someone else share a story of hope that speaks to something you are currently going through and it makes you feel like you are not alone.

HA! Maybe I am saying one workout can change your life…or perhaps someone else’s.

I do believe that with re:MOVE you get a family of UNIQUE, TALENTED, POSITIVE VIBE athletes that are sending ripples of transformation into our community. In a world that wants to categorize, label and divide, it is my prayer that WE CONTINUE TO BE INCLUSIVE of all that walk through our doors. And that we turn those ripples into WAVES!!!