My Exercise Classes [+ Convenient Snacks]

As you may already know, I have two jobs. I have my full-time job as a high school art teacher, and then my second job as a group exercise instructor. For the last three or four years, I have been teaching two Spinning classes each week, and occasionally cover a class for another instructor as needed. Sometimes in the summer, I am lucky enough to teach a class every day, because of instructors going on vacation. In recent months, I’ve been subbing Bodypump classes, which has been really great.

A few weeks ago, the aerobics coordinator at my gym (the boss lady :)) contacted me about possibly picking up some additional classes. She let me in on the secret that Fitness First (the gym I teach at) would be purchasing another gym in Frederick, and it might be opening in the next few weeks (and that nothing was completely certain yet- and to be flexible and ready to teach at a moment’s notice)! I told her that of course was interested in picking up some classes- I love to teach! About a week ago, the boss lady contacted me again and asked if I wanted to pick up a Spinning and a Bodypump class on Wednesday and Friday afternoons. I jumped on that opportunity and happily picked up the extra four classes. So now, I have six classes a week! I’m really excited about this, because it will make me a better instructor and lets me do what I love- and the money is pretty nice too. Let’s face it, it’s awesome to get paid to work out. If only that could translate to a full-time job…

Some people might think it’s nuts to teach 6 classes on top of having a full-time job (and people have told me that!), but it works for me. I’m going to be working out anyway- why not get the most of out it?


Yesterday as I was leaving the gym, I noticed a basket of freebies at the front desk. The gym is often mailed sample items like this, and I almost always grab whatever it is. This time it was Dole Real Fruit Bites. I quickly grabbed one of each flavor, thinking it might be a good pre-workout snack- especially for those early morning classes.

When I got to work, I dug one of the bags out to read the ingredients:

Whoa... my skin is dry.

Whoa! That’s a lot of ingredients- half of which I can’t pronounce! I think I’ll stick to my standard pre-workout half banana with a spoonful of peanut butter.

I’m not really big on pre-packaged stuff, period. I think it’s really important to take the extra time to prepare things that taste good and keep me full (or give me energy, if it’s pre-workout). And usually, for the calories, I’d rather just make something from scratch or grab something simple (like whole grain bread with almond butter) with minimal ingredients. That being said, there are times that it is really helpful to have something that is pre-packaged to grab and go. I always keep a few energy/protein bars on hand for this very reason- but I’m very picky and particular about what I buy. I discovered Rise bars at M.O.M. the over the weekend, and bought this flavor:

The ingredients for this bar include Almonds, Honey and Whey Protein Isolate. That’s it- just 3 ingredients! They had a lot of really delicious sounding flavors, but I chose this one because it was super high in protein (20 g). I ate it on Monday morning, after I got to work. I had worked out that morning and had a small smoothie right afterwards, and it was about an hour and a half later that I had this bar. It was really delicious, but my stomach was grumbling an hour later. This once again proved that bars just do not fill me up.

One more thing- look what I finally got yesterday:

Yay! I chose gray because I wanted something neutral. Greg thinks these are the ugliest shoes ever, but I love ’em.

What do you eat before working out? What about right after?


19 Comments on “My Exercise Classes [+ Convenient Snacks]”

  1. I think doubling up on teaching classes are okay if you’re doing a cardio class and a weight lifting class but I think two cardio classes or two body pump classes (per day) would be killer. You know your body the best and hey why not get paid!

    I hate bars! They never ever fill me up. I personally love a banana + PB for preworkout fuel. However, I’m typically not hungry after working out. I often have to force myself to eat dinner.

    PS I got the iphone and LOVE it. You should do the upgrade too!

    • Lauren says:

      I agree- I always think the people that take my spin class and stay for the next one are nuts (especially since I KILL them in mine!). But back to back spin and bodypump is doable. That being said, I’m exhausted and starving afterwards!

      I’ll be getting my iphone in a few weeks- I’m eligable for the upgrade on the 14th (i think)

  2. Congrats on the new classes! It doesn’t feel like work when you love it, right?!

    Love the Toms. I have the grey too. Unfortunately mine have a hole right where the little toe on the left side is. Its kind of difficult to wear those around here while the weather is still cold. šŸ™‚

  3. Corrie Anne says:

    Congratulations on your Toms!! Wow you are taking on a LOT of classes. You go get it!! Woohoo!!! You’re going to have such a blast!! I loved when I taught P.E., and got paid to run a few miles each morning. šŸ™‚

  4. Gil says:

    I usually choose fruit over bars–just as portable and convenient! In my food policy seminar, my professor always asks questions about what people are snacking on during class intermissions…its surprising how many people have no idea about the content of what they are eating…and yet are sitting in a food seminar!

    • Lauren says:

      Ooh- food policy seminar! I want to take that class. šŸ™‚ I want to go back to college- and would if someone paid me.

      • Gil says:

        Almost all doctoral programs do! A whopping 12k a year…haha, dont spend it all in one place!
        And food policy is the coolest šŸ™‚

  5. I am the same way with all of the :healthy” snacks things. I need to recognize all of the ingredients! And I don’t want 30g of sugar, thankyouverymuch. If I’m starving then I have a little pre-workout snack, but I always make sure to have a protein shake after for muscle building/recovery.

  6. Pickles & Honey says:

    Congrats on picking up those additional gym classes! I give you credit for taking all of that on, on top of your full-time teaching job!

    I have the same issue with bars – I like them, but they just do not keep me full. I need something with more volume. I usually have a piece of fruit and some almond butter about an hour before I go to the gym, and that seems to be the perfect amount to fuel my workout, but not give me stomach issues/cramping (I am not one of those people who can eat whatever I want and then exercise). I usually just eat dinner when I get home, since I tend to go to the gym in the evenings.

    • Lauren says:

      I used to never eat before working out in the morning, and then learned that was a big no-no. I make sure I have something- even if it’s just a few bites of banana and nut butter, so my body doesn’t stress out.

  7. Congrats on the extra classes… you obviously ROCK at teaching them!! On a side note, I’m TOTALLY scared of taking a spin class. Like super scared, deer in the headlights, scared.

    I like your new gray Toms, BUT I totally loved those pink ones too šŸ™‚

    I hate when I eat something that should be filling and then I’m hungry soon thereafter. Honestly that’s how I feel about oats and grains, even the “hearty” overnight oats. I soooooooooo prefer eggs at breakfast.

    • Lauren says:

      Oatmeal fills me up more than anything else, period. It’s the only thing that can make me able to last from the 5 hours between breakfast and lunch!

    • Lauren says:

      Oh- and don’t be scared to take a spin class! I was intimidated at first, but now (obviously) I love it! I have men and women of all shapes, sizes and ages in my classes. Some are super ripped, and some are very overweight and just getting started. Spinning is for everyone! YOU CAN DO IT- and I guarantee that you will love it.

  8. WAHOO!! Congrats girl šŸ™‚ You will love teaching so much–I am sure! SO happy for ya!!

  9. Lee says:

    Bars never fill me up. And I swear, larabars have shrunk in the past few years. I’ve never seen this particular kind though.

    I love my Toms.

  10. Mike says:

    I’ll definitely have to try that Rise protein bar…sounds pretty good plus the fact that it’s made with only 3 ingredients instead of the standard 20.
    Thanks for the tip!

  11. janetha says:

    i have that same color! love toms. wearing them now. black cord ones. i need to find those bars, they look great. sorry it wasnt filling!

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