Hi Jada, thank you for taking time out of your hectic schedule for us! We know that you’re a fitness coach and speaker. Can you tell us a little bit about that and how you got into doing that?
Jada: I have been training fitness clients for years, but over the past 6 or 7 years I have shifted my focus to becoming a great fitness coach! The difference for me was not only having face-to-face personal training clients, but also getting great at working with remote clients. I honestly started offering fitness coaching programs for some of my previous personal training clients who didn’t have the budget to continue with me face to face, but still wanted to work with me and have me create their programs. I have been perfecting my programs over the years and I am excited about my “Best ME Ever” program available now! I feel like it’s my best and a great balance between discipline and flexibility. Speaking publicly about all things fitness is relatively new, and something I have been doing more over the past 3 years. My first opportunity was actually at my parent’s church for a women’s event that focused on health and wellness. I love sharing practical tips on how to make time for exercise and eating well.
You’ve been teaching group fitness classes for years… throughout that time what’s your favorite class to teach and what class do you recommend everyone give a try once?
Jada: HA! I used to teach this class in college called Cardio Funk! That was my favorite class to teach…hands down! It was a mix of hip-hop and 80’s aerobic moves choreographed to the hits of the moment. It was always packed and one of those classes that you didn’t realize how hard you worked until the next morning when the soreness set in. I’m currently teaching at Equinox and I absolutely love The CUT- a martial arts based class with boxing and cardio intervals. I would recommend that everyone try a class that aligns with movement that they love! There are so many options and the important thing is finding something that you actually enjoy so that you will keep going back.
On your Instagram you’re always posting great exercise ideas. What are your top 5 exercise movements at the moment?
Jada: Why, thank you!! I’m really into full body workouts right now. My current favorites are-
- Single arm dumbbell snatch with a reverse lunge
- Dumbbell stiff-legged Deadlift with a bent over row at the bottom
- Any type of burpee (I’m working on getting GREAT at these so I do them in every workout)
- Triceps pushups
- Any type of plank variation
What does a typical training week look like for you? How many days are you working out and what type of workouts are you doing?
Jada: Right now, I’m training about 6 days a week for about 45 to 60 minutes each workout. I teach Body Challenge class on Mondays and do the workout with the class, so I basically kick my own butt! Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays are my most limited with time. I have found that full body circuits are most efficient on those days. Each day is different- maybe one is heavy with low repetitions, one of them uses Tabata protocol and the other is whatever I’m in the mood for- sometimes all barbell, sometimes all body weight. No matter what, I push my limits every time and make sure that I’ve given all I can in each workout. Fridays I teach 2 classes back to back in the morning, one strength based and one cardio interval based. I do about 70% of each class and use that as my workout. Saturdays or Sundays I have the most time to spend at the gym and I focus on LEGS! I go as heavy as I can and pair strength moves with plyometric moves to challenge and push my limits. I will usually take one “rest” day each week and focus on extra stretching and foam rolling.
Wow, that’s a lot to fit in! I know you have two young boys at home, how do you find a good balance between leading a healthy, active lifestyle and your family?
Jada: It’s a constant juggle…and honestly it’s really hard sometimes. I know I want to be the best wife and mother possible and eating well and exercise help me get there. Instead of saying to myself ,”I have no idea how I can do this.” I choose to ask, “When/How will I make this happen?” Then, I look at the kids’ schedule, my work schedule and my husband’s schedule and figure out a minimum of 30 minutes. I make “gym time” a non-negotiable for me, because I know it’s the best for me. We chose a gym with a kids club so that I can bring the kids with me and that makes it easier to get there.
With eating, I prep a good amount of food on the weekends so that at least half of my meals are already made. Doing this gives me more time with my family and less time in the kitchen on a daily basis. I also stock my fridge with fruit, veggies, hummus and nuts so that I can snack without my body feeling it later.
Some days are easier than others, but it’s really about making a choice and then not letting your feelings get in the way. J Occasionally, I will take extra rest days if my body is exhausted and I make sure to have treat meals 1-2 times per week. I’ve found that balance is the most possible when my actions line up with my priorities.
For people who just can’t seem to stay motivated to go to the gym, what advice do you have for them?
Jada: My advice is DO NOT depend on motivation! It comes and goes, just like feelings! Make a commitment, just like you would at a job, then GO. For most of us, working out feels great AFTER. So commit. Show up. Give it your best and with consistency, your motivation will grow. The next time you hit a season of life where motivation is lacking, you will go right into commitment mode and never miss a beat!
Obviously, nutrition plays a key role in staying healthy. Do you have a specific nutrition plan you follow? And do you cook that way for your children too?
Jada: I’m allergic to gluten and dairy, so my nutrition/eating works around that! I don’t follow a specific plan, because I don’t like feeling overly restricted. Instead I focus on all the things that I can have- any fruits, veggies, lean proteins, complex carbohydrates, nut milks, and healthy fats!! I am a creature of habit once I find something I really like.
My current day of eating looks like this –
- Breakfast: 1 egg + 2 egg whites w/kale, onion, Brussel sprouts and ½ avocado
- Snack: smoothie (1/2 frozen banana, ½ pear, ice, 1/3 cup almond milk, 2 handfuls of spinach, 1 tsp almond butter, 1 Tbsp chia seeds)
- Lunch: 4 oz chicken breast and a plate of grilled veggies (asparagus, zucchini, onion, bell pepper)
- Snack: carrots and hummus…sometimes with tortilla chips!
- Dinner: Chicken burrito bowl (red cabbage, chicken, sautéed onions and peppers, cilantro, salsa).
I make it a goal to drink 3 liters of water daily. Coffee doesn’t agree with my system anymore, so I stopped drinking that about 6 months ago. I don’t drink soda and not much of a juice lover.
With my kids, I always offer fruits, veggies and different types of salads. Sometimes they eat it, sometimes they don’t. As they get older, they have become more adventurous…my oldest actually requests grilled zucchini and asparagus now!
Besides eating consistently healthy, do you utilize any supplements to help aid your workouts?
Jada: YES! I take a raw multi-vitamin, Vitamin C, Omega fatty acids, turmeric and a probiotic daily. They indirectly affect my workouts by setting my body up to perform better.
Supplements that directly affect my workouts are myHMB, myHMB Clear and MRM BCAA+G. I take 1 serving of myHMB 2 times per day and 1 serving of myHMB Clear 30 minutes before my workouts. I love myHMB and myHMB Clear because they are stimulant free and help with muscle retention and recovery. I have been supplementing with myHMB since 2010 (except during my pregnancies and breastfeeding) and love the results with use over time.
What’s next on your agenda for fitness related events?
Jada: My next speaking engagement is coming up this weekend (12/2)! I will be joining a line-up of exceptional women as the in-house fitness expert. Any Los Angeles ladies are welcome to attend the Design My Life Vision Board Mastery conference! Link is in my Instagram bio! I have also been hosting monthly #WakePrayWORK events in Los Angeles, these are open to all fitness levels and free!
How will you prep for your conferences?
Jada: Preparing for speaking events is always fun…this specific event is all about creating a vision for your life and designing the life you want. I will be sharing 3 action steps to get to your goal and 3 daily “do’s” to keep you on track!
Any last thoughts you would like to share?
Jada: I always want to encourage the moms out there who are working towards fitness goals. Babies can throw your routine for a loop but, with time and consistency, you can be better than before kids. Your best is yet to come! Don’t give up.
Thanks for all the wonderful advice and good luck this weekend at your speaking event!