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Amanda Nurse: Going the Distance With MINDBODY and Strava
Fitness
Published Friday Aug 17, 2018 by Erica Arvanitis

Amanda Nurse: Going the Distance With MINDBODY and Strava

Fitness
Strength Training
Running
Barre
Yoga

A yoga instructor, barre enthusiast, and full-time mom, Amanda Nurse ran her first Boston Marathon in 2010 and 17 marathons latershe's a pro. Now an elite runner, Amanda has pivoted her life to fully embrace the world of fitness—owning and managing Wellness in Motion, Boston's first yoga studio for athletes. 

We asked Amanda to share what inspired her journey, and how the MINDBODY and Strava integration will further motivate her fitness goals. 

 

MINDBODY + Strava

Tell us a little bit about yourself, why you started running marathons and what led you to teaching yoga and taking barre classes? 

At Bowdoin College, I played Division III Lacrosse and put in a lot of miles during games, but I never had a love for running races until 2009. I moved to Boston after college and joined the Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge team to train for my first Boston Marathon. At the time, it felt like a bucket list item—one marathon and done (I thought!). But, after meeting so many great friends through the training process and running a BQ (Boston Qualifier) in 3:26 my first time, I decided to run another... and another, and another.

I fell in love with endurance running, and have run a total of 17 marathons, qualifying for the Olympic Marathon Trials. I’m currently training to run the Berlin Marathon next month! I started taking yoga classes to complement my marathon training, as a form of both strength training and stretching. Being prone to injuries such as plantar fasciitis, IT band syndrome and runner's knee, I knew I needed to take care of my body, and yoga helped combat these issues. The only problem was, it was hard to find classes geared towards athletes. So, I used my background in running and team sports to create yoga sequences designed to help athletes recover on their off days while helping them stay injury-free. 

I have taught classes to Harvard University teams, pro-hockey recruits, Boston marathoners through Runner's World, as well as starting my own yoga studio for athletes. I discovered Barre3 in 2017 when it opened in my neighborhood, and I was newly pregnant. Providing me with an amazing low-impact workout throughout my pregnancy—and now postpartum—barre has been instrumental in keeping me injury-free and strong during marathon training! 

 

Amanda Nurse

How do you stay on top of your goals in the world of performance athletes and being a new mom? What’s your self-care mantra for finding balance? 

Juggling new motherhood and personal fitness goals can sometimes feel daunting, but it's actually helped me stay more focused. I only have certain times each day that I can work out, and almost always it involves running with my son in the stroller. Luckily, he loves running with me so we get in outdoor time together and I find that pushing a stroller has made me a stronger runner. I also love bringing him to barre classes. I don't feel like I need to sacrifice my "A" goals, I just need to plan ahead, and make the most of my time. It's all about quality over quantity. 

 
You’re really involved in the Strava community. What’s it like being a part of this unique social network for athletes of all levels? 

Strava is an amazing fitness tool and has created a great community of like-minded athletes. I love seeing my fellow runners' workouts, recaps and running routes—it helps motivate my own running. I also love reflecting back on my runs and seeing the progress I've made. I sync all my GPS data to Strava so I can see my splits, heart rate, along with the elevation, etc. It's awesome!

 

What type of workouts do you search for and book on MINDBODY? How will syncing your MINDBODY and Strava accounts benefit your fitness routine?

I've found so many great barre, yoga, and running classes through the MINDBODY app, and it's so easy to book. Syncing my MINDBODY classes with Strava will add another layer to keeping my fitness training in one place. I like to analyze what's been helpful in my routine—what I've done for cross training versus strength—and it'll be awesome to have it all automatically synced to my Strava account. It's been really helpful having my Barre3 online classes syncing directly to my Strava!

 

Amanda Nurse
What words of advice would you give to someone just starting their fitness journey, whether it be their first group fitness class or training for a 5k?

First off, be kind to yourself. In times when it feels hard, know that it will get easier with practice—don't give up or get discouraged. Secondly, think of each workout as a gift to yourself, rather than something you have to do. You get this time to improve your well-being, so enjoy it. 

 

If you're interested in getting after your goals like Amanda and syncing your MINDBODY and Strava accounts, learn more here

Erica Arvanitis MINDBODY
Written by
Erica Arvanitis
Copywriter
About the author
A copywriter by day, Erica spends her free time mastering the art of puzzles while forcing her 10-year-old Chow mix to wear sweaters. With experience in PR, social media, marketing, and copywriting, Erica lives and breathes the written word. Warning: don’t test her on Friends trivia - she will win every time.
intuitive eating tips
Wellness
Published Tuesday Oct 22, 2019 by Connie Weissmuller

5 Things You Might Not Know About Intuitive Eating

Nutrition
Food
Expert Advice

Intuitive eating is an approach to eating that has nothing to do with diets, “lifestyle changes,” cleanses, or anything of the sort. It is a powerful way of giving trust and peace back to your body and mind, likely after a time of giving that trust up to external means of control such as using apps to count calories and steps, or intentionally trying to manipulate your body size. 

Intuitive eating, in its truest sense, is supportive of one’s mental, emotional, and physical health. However, as diet and wellness culture have co-opted the term, there has been some misinformation that actually isn’t in line with intuitive eating at all. As a Registered Dietitian and nutrition expert, I’m here to hopefully clear up some blurry lines and share with you some ways to get accurate information about intuitive eating.

If you see someone promoting intuitive eating as a means for intentional weight loss—run!

Here’s the thing; intuitive eating isn’t used for weight loss. Weight change may be an outcome of intuitive eating, but we have no idea whether that means an increase, decrease, or no change in weight. If someone is promoting intuitive eating as an explicit weight loss, slim down, or detox strategythat’s a red flag.

This is why many intuitive eating informed dietitians, counselors, and therapists suggest ditching the scale. The scale doesn’t tell you how well you are eating intuitively, and it certainly doesn’t give you helpful information regarding your health. At the end of the day, intuitive eating helps you move towards a healthy weight that is right for you. That’s also called your set point weight. It’s different for everyone. Intuitive eating is the nutrition paradigm supported by the larger paradigm of Health At Every Size, which respects body diversity, challenges scientific and cultural assumptions related to body size, and encourages finding joy in moving one’s body. There’s so much nuance, which is why there is value in working with a professional well-versed in intuitive eating and Health At Every Size

1
If you see someone promoting intuitive eating as a means for intentional weight loss—run!

Here’s the thing; intuitive eating isn’t used for weight loss. Weight change may be an outcome of intuitive eating, but we have no idea whether that means an increase, decrease, or no change in weight. If someone is promoting intuitive eating as an explicit weight loss, slim down, or detox strategythat’s a red flag.

This is why many intuitive eating informed dietitians, counselors, and therapists suggest ditching the scale. The scale doesn’t tell you how well you are eating intuitively, and it certainly doesn’t give you helpful information regarding your health. At the end of the day, intuitive eating helps you move towards a healthy weight that is right for you. That’s also called your set point weight. It’s different for everyone. Intuitive eating is the nutrition paradigm supported by the larger paradigm of Health At Every Size, which respects body diversity, challenges scientific and cultural assumptions related to body size, and encourages finding joy in moving one’s body. There’s so much nuance, which is why there is value in working with a professional well-versed in intuitive eating and Health At Every Size

It’s not just the hunger and fullness diet; there is so much nuance!

Often times, intuitive eating gets the most attention from “honoring hunger and fullness,” which is a huge part of intuitive eating, however; it’s not that simple. There are plenty of instances I can think of within myself, or with my clients in eating disorder and chronic dieting recovery, where you simply don’t get appropriate hunger and fullness cues.

Your body sends amazing signals when it needs nourishment, yet the culture we live in tells us that those innate signals can't be trusted. This can lead to diminished hunger and fullness cues from dieting, skipping meals, or following the bogus rule of no eating after 7 pm. This is where working with a professional to gain back appropriate cues is helpful. 

Sometimes we have to eat when we aren't hungry just for the simple reason that we need energy and nourishment. This can be uncomfortable. For example, before exams and presentations, while I was in school, I had no appetite, but I knew that my brain needed fuel. I practiced the gentle nutrition piece of intuitive eating and ate anyways to perform my best academically. This is just one example where it’s not merely honoring hunger and fullness. 

3
It’s not just the hunger and fullness diet; there is so much nuance!

Often times, intuitive eating gets the most attention from “honoring hunger and fullness,” which is a huge part of intuitive eating, however; it’s not that simple. There are plenty of instances I can think of within myself, or with my clients in eating disorder and chronic dieting recovery, where you simply don’t get appropriate hunger and fullness cues.

Your body sends amazing signals when it needs nourishment, yet the culture we live in tells us that those innate signals can't be trusted. This can lead to diminished hunger and fullness cues from dieting, skipping meals, or following the bogus rule of no eating after 7 pm. This is where working with a professional to gain back appropriate cues is helpful. 

Sometimes we have to eat when we aren't hungry just for the simple reason that we need energy and nourishment. This can be uncomfortable. For example, before exams and presentations, while I was in school, I had no appetite, but I knew that my brain needed fuel. I practiced the gentle nutrition piece of intuitive eating and ate anyways to perform my best academically. This is just one example where it’s not merely honoring hunger and fullness. 

It’s not just about eating donuts all day.

Another common misconception is that intuitive eating is all about fun food all the time. The truth is that yes, in order to make peace with all foods, there’s often a “honeymoon” phase, if you will, with certain foods that have been off-limits. Those foods are typically deemed “bad” in our culture, so that’s why you might see more photos of those on Instagram to normalize them. After that honeymoon phase, all foods are fair game, and there’s eventually a great balance in the diet of fuel food and fun foods. Fun foods, like donuts, get old after a while when there are no restrictions (mental or physical) around them, so that’s why intuitive eaters have no moral dilemma when presented with a donut. They eat it, or they don’t because they know that donuts are fair game whenever the craving hits. 

4
It’s not just about eating donuts all day.

Another common misconception is that intuitive eating is all about fun food all the time. The truth is that yes, in order to make peace with all foods, there’s often a “honeymoon” phase, if you will, with certain foods that have been off-limits. Those foods are typically deemed “bad” in our culture, so that’s why you might see more photos of those on Instagram to normalize them. After that honeymoon phase, all foods are fair game, and there’s eventually a great balance in the diet of fuel food and fun foods. Fun foods, like donuts, get old after a while when there are no restrictions (mental or physical) around them, so that’s why intuitive eaters have no moral dilemma when presented with a donut. They eat it, or they don’t because they know that donuts are fair game whenever the craving hits. 

It’s a process, and it takes time.

The last big misconception is the notion that you can become an intuitive eater overnight. Tapping back into your body’s innate intuitive nature takes time. Just learning to re-trust my fullness cues took me what I think was about half a year. Finding joy and peace in moving my body took so much longer after years of using exercise as punishment or to manipulate my body shape and size. It takes time to release the mental rules and rigidity around eating. It takes time for your body shape and size to fall at the range that’s right for you. It takes time to appreciate size diversity and maybe even grieve the loss of the body you had when dieting or restricting. This process can take years, and it’s imperative to give yourself a whole lot of self-compassion and grace, because you are surrounded by a culture that tells you dieting is the norm. It’s hard to swim upstream, but I promise you, it’s a lot more peaceful than living in diet culture. 

Feel free to follow and reach out to me on Instagram at @constancelyeating or if you would like to work with me in-person in Denver, or virtually, check out Nourished With Hannah to learn more about Hannah and me! 
 

5
It’s a process, and it takes time.

The last big misconception is the notion that you can become an intuitive eater overnight. Tapping back into your body’s innate intuitive nature takes time. Just learning to re-trust my fullness cues took me what I think was about half a year. Finding joy and peace in moving my body took so much longer after years of using exercise as punishment or to manipulate my body shape and size. It takes time to release the mental rules and rigidity around eating. It takes time for your body shape and size to fall at the range that’s right for you. It takes time to appreciate size diversity and maybe even grieve the loss of the body you had when dieting or restricting. This process can take years, and it’s imperative to give yourself a whole lot of self-compassion and grace, because you are surrounded by a culture that tells you dieting is the norm. It’s hard to swim upstream, but I promise you, it’s a lot more peaceful than living in diet culture. 

Feel free to follow and reach out to me on Instagram at @constancelyeating or if you would like to work with me in-person in Denver, or virtually, check out Nourished With Hannah to learn more about Hannah and me! 
 

Connie Weissmuller MINDBODY
Written by
Connie Weissmuller
Registered Dietitian
About the author
A registered dietitian who loves helping people achieve food and body freedom, Connie specializes in the treatment of eating disorders, intuitive eating, and body image from a Health At Every Size lens. Working with clients to overcome food and body struggles, she is all about giving you the tools you need to find what healthy means to you.