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fitness – Page 2 – Luv Saving Money

I Worked With A Personal Trainer Virtually For 2 Month Here’s What I Got Out of It

Before the spring of 2020 I had never worked with a personal trainer. It was something I had thought about but I thought it was just something for celebs and people with money. I am neither.

As some of you know I’m a bit of a sweepstakes junkie. I like to enter sweeps as one of my hobbies. I had entered a sweepstakes through Forever Fitness F2 for 2 months of personal training and nutrition coaching. I never expected to win.

You can probably guess, I did end up being one of the winners. I was both excited and nervous. I had some many questions and concerns. Things like: Am I going to have to work around the trainers schedule or will they be accommodating? What if I just can’t do it? How will virtual personal training work and why is it different than me just taking live online classes? What if I start and I just don’t like it? I’m gonna feel bad and I’m gonna feel like a quitter. What if they hand me a menu and I don’t like half the things on it? I hate mushrooms!

I wondered how to become a personal trainer, like, what all is involved?

Dwayne from Forever Fitness F2 contacted me via email (that’s how I’m most comfortable) and had me fill out my profile. Choosing foods I liked and was willing to eat and putting foods in a category I did not want to eat. Bye bye mushrooms! I was asked what days and times are better for me to work out. He got a feel for where I was at related to my fitness level. I filled out a form letting him know what equipment I had access to which, at that time was an old treadmill, a few hand weights, and one kettlebell lol

My schedule was set up that I had a half hour 1:1 personal training sessions on Monday evening (I’m an evening workout person. I hate mornings and they accommodated me). I was scheduled for 2 virtual live workout classes a week. Bootcamp on Tuesday evenings and Cardio kickboxing on Thursdays (this was my favorite class). If I had something come up I could let them know and reschedule or jump in on a different class. They were always flexible.

So what benefits did I get out of working with a personal trainer for 2 months? More than I thought actually.

#1 When I started with the trainer I had been in a weight-loss plateau for about 2 months. The trainer helped me break that plateau and I lost another 5 lbs. This was huge for me because I don’t lose a lot of weight at one time with any program.

#2 While working with the trainer I had also won a Nossk trainer. Which is a body weight suspension trainer. He noticed it in one of our training session and told me he was going to incorporate it so I can learn how to use it. It was super helpful. Turns out I was trying to do some of the exercises from the booklet wrong! But he straightened me out.

#3 For years I had been doing squats. Never once did I think I was doing them wrong. Never once did anyone teach me proper form. Thanks to my trainer, I found out I was doing squats wrong my entire life! Again he straightened me out and my knees are thankful.

#4 I don’t often lack motivation to start working out, it’s just, I tend to not push myself as much as I probably should. The trainer helped me learn that I can do more than I thought I could.

#5 I was able to ask fitness and nutrition questions that would pop up in my journey. He always answered them without making me feel stupid. I felt like if I had a concern, question, or what-if question it would be answered professionally.

So how is working with a trainer different than taking live fitness classes? Listen I’ve done live classes. If I sign up and pay for a class and don’t show up they usually just take my money and run or sometimes offer me to reschedule. If I didn’t show up I got texts lol. One time I mixed up the time for a class. I thought it started at 7 pm but it actually started at 6 pm. at 6:05 I got a text “I don’t see you in class” lol Sometimes i need someone to help me stay on track and hold me accountable.

I think most people get the idea that they have to have a personal trainer for months until they reach a goal or to get the benefit. But, I really got a lot out of the 2 months working with Dwayne. I’d recommend it to anyone thinking about it, even if it’s just a month or two like me to get on the right rack. You might even learn a few things! Being able to do my training sessions virtually was a huge convenience for me too. No worrying about finding a sitter, driving there and back, forgetting something, the usuals of going to a gym.

This post is brought to you by Diamond Bloggers. Any opinions expressed are my own.

Everybody Walk Across Pennsylvania: A Virtual Walking Program

Penn State Extension has done it again with another fun program to help you stay fit. As a Pennsylvania native myself, this is particularly interesting to me. Do I have any Pennsylvania readers here?

Everybody Walk Across Pennsylvania is a free virtual walking program designed to help participants meet their health goals this spring. The eight-week, semi-structured program encourages participants to increase their physical activity and develop healthy eating habits. The program will run from April 5 to May 24.

Participants can join individually or form teams of five with family, friends, coworkers or even the family dog. Since it is a virtual program, locations and times of walking can be customized completely: mornings at the local park, lunchtime at home or around the neighborhood in the evenings. The program also includes an exercise conversion chart to convert many activities into reportable miles.

Each team member will try to walk an average of 10 miles per week. Team captains will be asked to report the total number of miles walked, and all participants will receive weekly emails with motivators to keep walking and strategies for healthy eating.

The weekly emails are related to the program’s themes. This year, Penn State Extension is collaborating with the Penn State Cancer Institute to provide more information about health and wellness, heathy eating, chronic illness and cancer prevention resources and tips.

Of course, Penn State Extension encourages you to follow all CDC and local guidelines during the pandemic. They even offer helpful tips. Maybe instead of walking as a group consider calling a teammate on your cell while you walk and talk.

I would personally add that, if you’re going to be in an area around other people don’t forget your mask. I also keep hand sanitizer in my car just in case. If it’s too cold to walk, I’ll be logging the miles on my treadmill.

The last time that Penn State Extension did this they had 471 participants that logged over 62,000 miles in all. That’s an awesome job!

If you’re interested in participating, registration deadline is March 29. You can find out more info, and register here:

Oh I forgot to mention, it’s also a free program. What a fun way to kick up your fitness or add to your fitness goals. I’ll be participating for sure!

Dancing & Life: Positive Quote For The Day

I love it when I see people really achieve their intentions.
The secret to creating resolutions that will last is creating plans with intention.
You succeed when your plans are aligned with your big-picture goals.
Tell us what your goals are for the year, and how they align with your resolutions.
How do you plan to put your intention for this year into action?

For me, I did so good with my health and fitness journey last year. When I say so good, I mean I was able to be pretty consistent with my workout programs, I learned how to calculate macros and became more aware of what i was eating. I even lost 10 lb. Though, over the holidays I slacked off and gained some weight back. But I’m back at it. For me, it wasn’t about waiting until Jan 1st or trying to fit into a certain article of clothing this time. I realized how much working out and eating better has helped with my depression, anxiety, and overall health. That is my intention. Sure I still have some weight loss goals and clothing size goals but that isn’t my driving force anymore.

So what will you set your intentions toward this year?

This post is sponsored post through Blog Meet Brand. Any opinions expressed are my own.

2021 Will Be The Year I Say Yes For Myself

I’m a 40 something mom of 4. My kids are 18, 17, 11, and 7. There is, of course, a level of sadness that my kids are growing up. But it’s not all that bad. My oldest two are driving now and they have their own vehicles. There were times where I didn’t know how I was going to be 3 places at once because my 3 boys all had different practices in different places at different times.

My daughter has become a little more independent over the last year. She can get her own snacks and drinks. There’s no more bathroom assistance.

All this made me realize that I have a little more time on my hands than I used to. I realized there was a time when I’d get my nails done or my brows waxed or enjoy a trip out by myself. I realized I could do some of that stuff now. My husband and I can have date nights because my older boys are happy to babysit if they don’t have plans and we wave a $20 bill in front of them lol.

Pampering Myself

Of course, the pandemic limits some of this stuff. One thing I’ve thought about doing for me for a while is laser hair removal. In short, I’m just tired of shaving but it has to be done. I wouldn’t be able to stand it if I didn’t. I emailed a local place to see about it but the cost was more than I had hoped and the amount of appointments I would need…well..I wasn’t willing to give up that much free time.

I started researching those at-home laser hair removal devices. After reading, what seemed like, 100s of reviews on tens of products and watching youtube videos I finally settled on one. I ordered it and just got the shipping notification today. If you want me to do a review post and/or review video let me know. I’ll be doing a review and progress reports of the Silk’n eHPL home hair removal device. You can see my unboxing video on facebook:

I’ve also wanted to get my nails done for a while. My MIL got me a certificate to get a manicure last Christmas. The hospital I work at doesn’t allow fake nail tips, press-ons, etc of any type of hygienic reasons so I just got a regular manicure but it didn’t last any longer than when I do it. I’ve tried the nail shields/wraps but I struggle with applying them. Then when I go through the hassle they’re usually off in a week or two anyway . Then I learned about the nail dip kits. These have been growing in popularity since nail salons are shut down periodically with the pandemic. So I just ordered one of those too. Oddly, I’m more nervous about attempting that than the laser hair removal device lol.

Fitness For My Physical And Mental Well Being

I also joined another Darihana Nova fitness challenge that starts January 4 and ends on Valentine’s day. You guys, I’ve done two of her challenges before and they are no joke. While I only lost about 5 lbs with each challenge before, I lost inches and 2 pants sizes in the process. That was more than any other fitness venture I had done for myself before.

Her challenges are super motivating. They each have their own facebook group with supportive people. It’s a 6 day a week program but you can do it whatever times works for you .I’m a night owl so I usually do mine in the evenings. It also doesn’t hurt that they have nice prizes for the top 5 that finish the challenge. (This is only for the live challenges not the ones that aren’t live) She also doesn’t go by strictly weight loss she makes the decision off of body composition and visual changes too.

The first challenge I did she had a video before the program started that explained how to calculate macros. It was the first time I actually understood macros and knew what I should eat. It wasn’t just someone handing you a menu or saying “here eat this”. It was so helpful.

Darihana Nova fitness also has some awesome cotton long bands and booty bands. I have a few of her bands and they are superior to other brands I own. Also if you use code: LuvSavingMoney you can save 10% off fitness accessories or programs. Including the Bodyodyody Challenge that I’m doing that goes live on Jan 4!


I usually post on my instagram page about once a week with my workouts. I’m considering doing a review of the Darihana Nova Bodyodyody Challenge and some progress posts too. Let me know if you want me to do that. I believe I still have a few pics up on my instagram from the Be Your Own Body Goals Challenge (BYOBG)

This post does contain affiliate links. I will earn a small commission through the Darihana Nova links. There is also an Amazon affiliate link included in my post

My Experience Proform Studio Bike Pro

How We Ended Up Choosing Proform Studio Pro Bike

I had a gym membership. I wasn’t a “gym person” until I found the right gym for me. I looked forward to it. I had a routine. Then when the pandemic hit, like many, the gyms closed down. I was lost. I tried to do workouts at home but it just wasn’t the same.

We first got a Proform treadmill around March. Shipping was fairly quick then and I had no issues. This is when we were also introduced to the iFit app. It wasn’t something I didn’t think we needed but immediately fell in love with. I was doing the beginners running series with Tommy Rivers Puzey and it was amazing. I had never been able to run my whole life. Even in my younger days when I was in better shape. This built me up to running more than anything else ever had. And when I didn’t feel like running, I could do a restoring walk in the mountains, or beach or whatever.

I missed the exercise bikes from the gym though. I had tried a spin class at my local community building and it peaked my interest. I had full intention of doing more classes but…stupid pandemic.

I would have never asked for a studio bike but my hubby brought up the idea of getting an exercise bike. I had already had my eyes on the Proform Studio Pro bike. It was built similar to the spin class bikes and we already had ifit so I could start doing the ifit cycle classes. Thankfully my hubby was in agreement.

Now The Wait, And Shipping Experience

We ordered it around the 2nd week of September. When we ordered it said they were behind on orders (again due to the pandemic) and we should expect our bike around Oct 12. You might know that home exercise equipment company sales have greatly increased during the pandemic so most exercise equipment whether it be bikes, treadmills, benches, etc have been behind with shipping. For a while it was also hard to find hand weights and kettlebells too

Well it was Oct 9 (a Friday) and we hadn’t heard a thing so I used the customer service chat to see what the deal was. I was told our bike had been sent to the shipping warehouse and we should receive our bike “shortly”. That pacified me enough though I was super anxious to get our bike. We did not receive our bike until Oct 30.

When we received it we noticed there was a fairly big hole in the side of the box and it had very obviously been taped over. So someone saw the whole, taped it, but never bother to make sure the product was ok.

My 17 year old loves putting stuff together so he put it together for us. He said “uh mom, there’s a problem” The back of the monitor had a sizeable crack in it. I was so upset. The monitor is what you use to view your classes. We tested the monitor and it still worked but I worried about the safety. I don’t want to be using it and have sparks fly out or something. I also saw that the smaller box that the monitor was packed in, also had a whole in it and we deducted it must have been located where the whole was in the big box.

I contacted the company and they didn’t give me a hard time at all. They said they’d send a new monitor out. Unfortunately that was back in November and we’ve yet to receive the replacement monitor. Fortunately the cracked monitor has been working and you don’t leave the bike plugged in when you’re not using it anyway so we just went with it.

We had also heard NOTHING about the 3 yr iFit family membership we were supposed to receive with it. Again it took a few phone calls and several emails to finally get our iFit membership set up. Then we realized we’ve received ZERO information about our financing. We were told, via another phone call, that our info was sent to the financier and we should receive our finance packet “soon”. After almost 2 months we finally received financing info and could start paying for our bike. We were worried with how disorganized everything had been that they would ding our credit because we weren’t paying but we were trying, we really really were.

After The Initial Fiasco, (And Some Calm Down Time)

My husband and I have been regularly using our Proform Studio Pro bike. I can honestly say I love it. It’s easy to adjust. The iFit app works great. My hubby and I will swap workout brags. So I did a 4.5 mile bike ride in the Moab desert today. Cool, I did 10 miles in Japan today. It’s fun though because it gives us ideas and helps motivate each other.

The seat did take some getting used to. We ended up buying one of those gel bike seat cushions from Amazon and that helped. Over time, we got “used” to it and the seat isn’t uncomfortable anymore.

The bike is very adjustable. I’m 5′ 4″ and my hubby is 6 foot even. We have no issues adjusting for either of us. The ifit family account allows up to 5 people on the account. They must be invited by email so whoever you add in your family has to have an email account.

You do not need special cycling shoes like you do with some studio bikes. I just use regular running shoes. There are straps on the pedals and teeth on the pedals to help ensure your feet don’t slide.

So What Can You Do On The Bike With The iFit App

There are lots of options depending on your fitness and cycling level. Workouts have a difficulty level bar. I tend to stick around 1, 2, or 3 for now. They go up to as high a like 10 or something.

There are many different setting and types of workouts: spin classes, mountain biking, endurance rides, recovery rides, interval training, and classes that include both bike work and off the bike work. Oh that reminds me, the Proform Studio Pro also come with 3 lb hand weights. There’s tons of different settings from dessert, mountain, beach, forest, studio, and international.

They recently added so music can play during your workouts but you have the option to turn the music down/up/off. There are also challenges you can participate in and live classes if you like. Just since we got our bike they’ve added several new features. They’s constantly adding new classes and challenges too.

Overall Opinion

Love the bike. I know that the shipping and customer service issues were not the norm and is strained due to the pandemic. We had no issue at all when we got our treadmill earlier in the year.

The iFit app is awesome and continues to improve all the time. If we were to get another piece of equipment we’d definitely look at buying another piece compatible with iFit.

The bike is very adjustable and well made. It’s sturdy and hold up to 250 lbs. My husband was slightly over that so before we ordered we asked if that would be an issue or void the warranty if we were to order. Being as it was only a few pounds over they told us it would not.

If you’d like me to do a post on our treadmill, I’d be happy to. Just let me know.

This is NOT a sponsored post. We bought the Proform Studio Pro bike ourselves. There is an Amazon affiliate link in the post.