Day 1579 – Helping Friends, Multitasking And The Best Thing That Happened To Me Today

One thing that was mentioned at the Wedding MBA was a book called Strengths Finder 2.0 by Tom Rath. I got it and took the quiz to find my strengths. I was really surprised at the results! I found myself continually saying, “Yea! That’s me! I do that!” A big take away from what I learned was that I thrive when I interact with people. Whether I’m just giving advice, encouragement or just all around helping out. I didn’t realize how big of a deal this was until after I came home from working at the new K&B space yesterday. I spent a lot of time reading and getting really on fire for my business. All because I spent some time helping others. It’s important to know your strengths friends!

One of my other strengths was called Input…basically, I love collecting things…which would include information. Since yesterday, I have been inhaling information, specifically about sales. I’m LOVING IT!!! I was about to hop on the treadmill and was just dreading it. I’m doing a plan that helps you increase miles, but there’s a lot of intervals, it can take like 30 minutes just to do 2 miles. I’m all about just getting the workout done as quick as possible. So, I thought, ok, I’ll watch/listen to a sales video while I do it. I found a great video on selling cars….I know, I know, I sell memories via images…but there were a LOT of great tips that I can apply to my business. It was the fastest 30 minutes I’ve spent on the treadmill!

Disclaimer: I did not watch the video while running/walking, I had headphones in and just listened. 🙂

Lastly, and this is the BEST part, I ran up to the library to pick up a book I requested (sidenote: I wish I had used this ONLINE feature sooner. Back in the day I would drive to a ton of libraries. Ah, past Jennilyn, you silly head.) After I got a few more books, I stopped by 7-Eleven. Imagine my absolute DELIGHT when I saw that peppermint mocha’s are back! YES!!!!!

They don’t have the holiday coffee cozies yet, which is FINE by me, but that says peppermint mocha better than what’s on my mug right now. So enjoy this picture from last year!


Day 1444 – A Personal Post – Personal Trainer Husband

When I first got married, I thought I was in pretty decent shape. I went rock climbing pretty regularly. But then, I tried to work out with Bret. I could barely run half a mile without taking a break. I would say almost every time we tried to run together, I would start to cry. Looking back, I know it’s because I put so much pressure on myself to be “the perfect workout buddy.” I also wanted to impress my husband….if you’ve met him or seen him, you know he’s in GREAT shape. He loves to work out…hence why he started a personal training business. It took me a long time to realize that all he wanted was just that I tried. If I did 2 miles, but only ran half of it…it was still getting out there and doing it.

Over the past month, I’ve been working out about 5-6 times a week. I’ve been doing an increasing mileage run program and an increasing time body weight program. I wasn’t really seeing the results I’d like….mostly because one of my weaknesses is beer. I wasn’t really tracking my food intake either….not that I do much of this anyways, but I was changing my diet a little bit and eating WAY more than I realized. It’s crazy how quickly it adds up if you don’t realize it.

So, I’ve been wanting to try something new…and drink a little less beer. 😉 What better new workout than asking my husband who is a personal trainer!? Seriously Jen, why didn’t you ask him before? Well, mostly because of the reasons above. I hate not being able to keep up with him. But then, when I think about it, he’s in MUCH better shape than me and can do MUCH more. Why do I think I can keep up with that??

Today, we worked out together. At first, I was doing pretty well at first, but then it was taking a lot out of me. That’s when he said, ok, that’s the end of one set. I’m all, um, what? How many more?! TWO MORE! Ah! We took a little break and started the next set, which was half of the first. When we had about 2-3 exercises left, I took a little break and thought I would pass out. I got the stars, than the lightheadedness and then I said, I HAVE to sit down and get some water. He walked me to the porch, got some water, rested and I finished both sets.

What I absolutely loved about the last two sets is that Bret was very gracious. Taking it slow and telling me multiple times to not beat myself up (he knows me SO well!) Thankfully, I wasn’t beating myself up. I was more just pushing myself to my limit and it did feel good….you know, besides almost passing out.

I also loved getting a look at what one of Bret’s clients gets when they work with him. I’m so proud of him….I’m also thankful for the resource that he is!


Day 1404 – You Have To Have Goals And A Way To Measure Them

A few days ago, I was chatting with Bret and my sister about how far I had run since I’ve used RunKeeper and I said I have completed over 2,000 miles! It got me thinking how cool it is that I have so much history tracked. As I was preparing for this blog, I took a screen shot of my success…I was a little off on the miles….


Soooo, I’ve run 186 miles and burned over 20,000 calories….oops! But still, it’s really great to see that success! Baltimore is 186 miles away from NYC. AWESOME to think I’ve run that far! Now, this covers about 2 years of running…but still! It was really encouraging to me to see what I’ve done in the past. I encourage you to find a tracker for whatever your goal is! There are tons of apps out there!

Day 1399 – A New Era Of Life = New Goals

Over the last few weeks, a lot has changed…mostly that we are out of debt and I feel a freedom like I’ve never had before. I won’t say that I’ve been lazy, because I don’t think I have been. I think there is something to enjoying the fruit of your labor. I spent many years working two jobs, many days working 15-20 hours, many sleepless nights, much worrying. It was the busiest March and April I’ve EVER had…two jobs or not. So I don’t exactly feel bad about taking “off” as much as I have. I have spent some of the time thinking about my business…what can I do differently? How should I adjust my prices to be more profitable? How can I present myself in person and on the web so that I bring in THE perfect clients for us? All in all, it’s like a new era in my life. Not only in my business but also in my health.

Bret started his own personal training business in January of this year. There have been aspects that have been a little bit of a struggle…mostly the fact that I have to actually get off my butt and workout as well as not chow down on junk food….or at least workout enough to burn off said junk food.

I said I would share tips here and there. Well, today I’m sharing a tip and some big goals!

I want to run more. Running has always been a struggle for me. Mostly getting into a routine and increasing my mileage. I’ve done 2 Susan G. Komen 5k’s….but those almost don’t count because there are so many people…it’s just different. I’ve also done a mud run…also, doesn’t really count. I’ve never really been “trained” when I did said 5k’s. I don’t have a burning desire to do a race…though, I have a small bucket list, “maybe-I’ll-do-this-someday” feeling towards running a marathon. Mostly just to say that I’ve done it. Bottom line, I just want to increase my mileage…whether I do a race or not. SO! I’m attempting the 10% increase per week rule. If I stick with this, I’ll be up to marathon mileage by the end of the year. But seriously folks, if I can run 5 miles or even a 10k, I think I’ll be pretty happy. I’m going to run 3 times a week, starting with 1 mile. I did that this week AND I’m very happy with my times each run. That’s goal #1.

I also want to do body weight/free weight workouts. I’m starting with 10 minutes a day 3 times a week and increasing 1 minute a week. I’ll mostly be doing workouts from Pinterest and some routines Bret is using with his clients….which, HOLY COW is he tough on his clients! I did HALF of a workout and was sore for 3 days! Yikes! That’s goal #2.

So there you go. I’m putting my goals out there. Keep me in check if you want. I want you to also notice that I’m only working out 10-13 minutes per day. YOU can work out, even if you start small. No excuses.


Day 1381 – Do You Love Money?

As I was reading through my bible this morning, I came across this verse:

“Keep your life free from love of money,
and be content with what you have,
for he has said,
‘I will never leave you nor forsake you.’
So we can confidently say,
‘The Lord is my helper;
I will not fear;
what can man do to me?'”
Hebrews 13:5-6

This stuck out to me today because of the last year and a half and all that has happened to us. I’ve shared a few times about our financial situation, how it’s been tough and how we’ve grown through it. I would definitely admit to you that we had a love of money at the beginning of our marriage and my full-time photography journey. Not the “normal” love….but the trust in money….that if we have JUST the right amount, we’ll be ok. If we sold enough stuff, if we got one more wedding, if we didn’t go out to eat one more time. But God has a way of looking to our deepest core and saying, um, no, that’s not the issue here. Our biggest issue was that we didn’t trust that God would take care of us. Now, I’m not saying sit on your butt and wait for God to pour buckets of money out…that’s not how it works. You have to work for things. What I’m saying is that our trust and hope were in US to take care of things.

Thankfully, God didn’t leave us in that state. He broke us down to our knees, again and again…giving us JUST enough money to pay the bills, sometimes down to the penny…until we let go of the reigns and could honestly say “not our will but yours.” It has been such an amazing change that could only come from a loving God. Trust me, you would NOT believe the arguments (i.e. shouting matches) we would have about money and work. Whew! Glad those days are gone! A few months back, when we were having car troubles, I remember a specific conversation with Bret where I said, dang, I think I need to take the car in, we cannot afford that right now! Also, mind you, we were SOOOO close to paying off our debt. And in one breath, we let it go and said, BUT God is in control. Fast forward another week and we had taken in my car twice and Bret’s truck once.

I remember being so discouraged. We had just about tripled what we owed. I didn’t really have too many leads (at the time) for weddings. Bret hadn’t booked any clients either. But we still trusted.

Then something happened, almost overnight. We started booking a lot of clients. I have booked 3 weddings and Bret has booked 3 clients since then! We started being able to chip away at the loan and credit card debt, and then, it was gone. We are now at the point where we can put money in SAVINGS! I can’t remember the last time I was able to do that! We are able to budget money for hanging out with our friends and going out to dinner.

I truly believe it’s because we have taken hold of the second verse, “The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?”

So take heart, dear reader, there is hope. It isn’t an easy journey, trust me. But what good thing has ever come easy?



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