Sweat Diaries

I Work 6 Different Jobs as a Full-Time Fitness Professional. Here’s What My Week Looks Like.

From working the front desk at Orangetheory Fitness to teaching classes at Body Cycle Studio, Jenna Stern makes a full-time role out of six.


Welcome to Sweat Diaries, Be Well Philly’s look at the time, energy, and money people invest in pursuit of a healthy lifestyle in Philly. For each Sweat Diary, we ask one Philadelphian to spend five days tracking everything they eat, all the exercise they get, and the money they spend on both. Want to submit a Sweat Diary? Email ccunningham@phillymag.com with details. 

Who: Jenna Stern (@the_philasophy), 26, a spinning instructor at Body Cycle Studio and City Fitness, the community coordinator for Athleta from Graduate Hospital, a staff member at Orangetheory Fitness, a nutrition coach, and a soon-to-be-certified personal trainer

What role health and fitness plays in my life: EVERYTHING! Between teaching my own six spin classes a week, working for a women’s athleisure brand, and being a certified nutritional guide, health and fitness are the foundation of my life, but it hasn’t always been like that for me. To be completely honest, I struggled with my weight and nutrition for the longest time, and it’s something I continue to work on every day. I still remember myself at 12 years old crying in the dressing room at Old Navy because I couldn’t fit into the girl’s sizes anymore. My teenage years were all about me trying every “fad” diet out there. It wasn’t until a girlfriend introduced me to spinning that that all changed. As I educated myself more in both fitness and nutrition and saw the amazing benefits firsthand, I realized I wanted to share it with others.

Health and wellness memberships: Because I work at several studios and a gym, I don’t really pay for memberships. A major aspect of my job at Athleta is taking classes within the Philly fitness community, so they cover the cost if there ever is any. But I consider skincare a part of “health,” so I currently have a monthly subscription to Beauty Pie that I pay $10 a month for.

Typical grocery bill: I spend anywhere between $300 to $400 a month on groceries. I live a very active lifestyle and am also working on building my nutritional guidance business and website, so food is big part of my monthly expenses.

Monday

Photograph courtesy Jenna Stern.

7:15 a.m. — I hit snooze once (okay, maybe twice) and am up by 7:40. I teach at 9 a.m. at City Fitness Graduate Hospital and love it because it gets my butt out of bed and sets the tone for my week! I also got my first class teaching in the city at that location, so it’s got a special place in my heart.

7:45 a.m. — I’m drinking a big cup of warm lemon water while my coffee brews.

8 a.m. — Once my coffee is brewed, I add in coconut creamer, a scoop of Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides, and Stevia. I then make myself a rice cake with peanut butter, banana, cinnamon, and a sprinkle of hemp seeds as a pre-workout snack.

8:25 a.m. — I decide to call a Lyft Line. I usually bike, but it’s raining something fierce, so that’s not happening this a.m.

8:45 a.m. — Somehow at the gym right on time, I grab my spin stuff from the front desk and am happy to see I have my usual crew of 15 riders in my 9 a.m.

10:50 a.m. — After class, I am also able to get in a quick back workout using the cable machine. By the time I’m done, the rain has stopped, so I make the 15-minute walk home.

11:10 a.m. — I start another cup of coffee and hop in the shower to rinse off. I teach at  Body Cycle Studio at 7:30 p.m. later today so I rinse off, put a little baby powder in my hair, blow dry, and twist it back into a bun. Low maintenance for the win.

11:30 a.m. — I’m in a fresh pair of leggings and a T-shirt and make my favorite meal of the day, breakfast! I’m sipping on my second cup of coffee and make “egg in a holes.” I cut the center out of two slices of Ezekiel toast, fill them with spinach, and crack an egg inside. I also toast up a Trader Joe’s meatless sausage patty. I top the egg toasts with some sautéed peppers, guac, and cover it all with salsa. Amaze.

12:15 p.m. — After doing a post for The Positivity Charge, which I’m a brand ambassador for, check in with two of my nutrition clients, and answer some emails.

Photograph courtesy Jenna Stern.

12:35 p.m. — I make a simple salad with broccoli kale slaw and spring mix, cook a high protein veggie burger, and grab an apple and Siggi’s yogurt to have as a snack later. I grab my book bag, helmet and hop on my bike to head to Athleta for work.

4 p.m. — After a busy few hours, I break for lunch and have the salad and veggie burger I packed, plus half an avocado that my manager gave me. When someone offers you half of a perfectly ripe avocado, you accept.

4:35 p.m. — I’m feeling a little fuzzy, and I still have to teach later, so it’s La Colombe coffee to the rescue. I grab a cup for my manager and I — I have mine with a splash of oat milk and Splenda ($4.50).

6:30 p.m. — I’m not feeling the yogurt and apple I brought, so instead I snack on a few big handfuls of Skinny Pop and an orange left over from store events over the weekend.

7 p.m. — I walk over to Body Cycle to teach the 7:30 p.m.

8:30 p.m. — My class is over, riders are smiling and sweaty, and we’re all ready to head home. I grab my stuff and stop into Snap Kitchen to get something easy for dinner. I go with the naked beef and make the ten-minute bike ride home ($15.65).

8:53 p.m. — Time for a real shower and dinner! I microwave my dinner and have a few rice crackers with hummus while I wait. I am obsessed with Crystal hot sauce and top my dinner with it.

9:20 p.m. — After dinner, I prep my breakfast and a snack for tomorrow. A square of my apple pie oatmeal bake (prepped and frozen on Friday) with a Siggi’s yogurt, hemp and chia seeds, and a tablespoon of peanut butter as my breakfast, and two eggs with rice cakes and a guac pack as a snack. I have a serious sweet tooth, so I have a piece of the oatmeal bake as my dessert as well.

10 p.m. — I pack my clothes and get in bed.

10:15 p.m. — I downloaded the meditation app Headspace. I like to do it before bed to relax.

10:30 a.m. — A little Food Network and bed!

Daily total: $20.15

Tuesday

Photograph courtesy Jenna Stern.

 6 a.m. — Alarm. I only snooze once and am up by 6:15. I train a close friend of mine on Tuesdays and Thursdays at her home gym. I’m studying for my ACE personal training certification and working with my friend has been so helpful with putting what I’m learning to use.

6:20 a.m. — I’m sipping on a big glass of warm lemon water and make my first cup of coffee.

6:45 a.m. — I’m dressed and my bag is packed with my meals. I grab my helmet and bike to my friend’s apartment.

7:50 a.m. — My friend kills it in our training session! I’m back on my bike and head over to my other part-time gig at Orangetheory Fitness. I work the front desk on Tuesdays and Thursdays at the Liberty Place location. The best perk of the job is being able to take the classes for free when there’s room!

8:15 a.m. — I eat my packed oatmeal bake breakfast and settle in at my desk and get some client work done.

Photograph courtesy Jenna Stern.

9:15 a.m. — There’s room in class, so I hop in. It’s a power day and there’s a bunch of switching around. I love how every class is different, so I am always challenged!

10:15 a.m. — Class is over. I take a quick body shower, change into fresh clothes and run over to the Vitamin Shoppe. I grab an Orgain shake to hold me over ($3.69).

12:45 p.m. — I have two rice cakes with some guac and eggs, I top it all with the Trader Joe’s Everything but the Bagel Seasoning.

2 p.m. — Finished at OTF, I bike home for a break before I teach at City Fitness.

2:15 p.m. — I need to make a new ride for tonight. I make a big salad with a Trader Joe’s high-protein veggie burger, then pop my ear buds in and go to work.

3 p.m. — Time to get some meal prep done. I’m roasting carrots and parsnips, making zhoug-sauce-flavored turkey patties, and a yogurt sauce to drizzle on top. I also got whole wheat lavash bread to eat with it. I also bake some tofu and make a mint-pea mash.

4:30 p.m. — My prep is done! I like to break my meal prep up — I don’t waste as much food and it’s much less overwhelming for me. I then get changed and make an instant Colombian iced coffee with almond milk.

5 p.m. — I’m in my car and make the 20-minute drive to Fishtown!

6:45 p.m. — My class was packed and my riders rocked! But I’m officially hangry and ready for a shower.

7:30 p.m. — It’s time for a hot shower and dinner. I don’t think there’s anything better than putting on a big pair of sweats after a shower!

Photograph courtesy Jenna Stern.

8 p.m. — I’m on the couch eating the meal I prepped earlier in the day and catch some of the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.

9 p.m. — I get myself ready for my day tomorrow. I pack my meals and my book bag with a change of clothes.

10 p.m. — I’m finally in my happy place (a.k.a. my bed).

Daily total: $3.69

Wednesday

Photograph courtesy Jenna Stern.

5:45 a.m. — Alarm goes off, I hit snooze once and am up by 6 a.m. I sip on warm water and make my coffee.

6:15 a.m. — I quickly check in with one of my nutrition clients. She’s a teacher and is up early, so we discuss her meals for the day and chat about her progress.

6:30 a.m. — I’m dressed, grab my stuff for the day, and bike to another friend’s apartment for a training session. My girlfriends are super supportive and know I’m working hard to get certified.

8 a.m. — My first session is done. She lives in a building with a coffee machine, so I make a second cup there, have a No Cow protein bar, and head over to City Fitness Logan Square to meet my other girlfriend for a full-body workout!

8:30 a.m. — I come up with a fun circuit for us that incorporates bands and dumbbells. By the end, we’re both sweating.

9:30 a.m. — I bike over to Flywheel to catch a 10 a.m. class. Through Athleta, I’m able to ride at Flywheel for free most of the time if it’s off-peak and there’s room.

10:45 a.m. — Leroy kills that class and me, which I needed. It’s so nice to get out of my own head and have someone coach me through a ride.

11:30 a.m. — I shower and change at Flywheel and head over to Athleta.

11:45 a.m. — Time for breakfast. I have a Greek yogurt with chia seeds, hemp seeds, cinnamon and a little Stevia, a square of my Apple pie oatmeal bake, a tablespoon of peanut butter, and a few banana slices.

1 p.m. — I’m officially clocked in at work and get to it.

4 p.m. — After several meetings and some emails I come up for air and eat my lunch. I have the big salad with tofu that I packed last night.

4:30 p.m. — My manager and I are both ready for a cup of coffee. She sends me out to La Colombe and pays for it since I got ours yesterday. I get an ice coffee with oat milk.

7 p.m. — The last few hours fly by, and I’m ready to head home for the night.

Photograph courtesy Jenna Stern.

8:10 p.m. — At home, I heat up a few turkey patties, roasted veggies, and yogurt sauce, plus half a piece of lavash bread with some mint pea mash on top.

9 p.m. — I pack my breakfast and lunch for tomorrow as well as my book bag with a change of clothes.

9:43 p.m. — I finish the playlist for my Drake theme ride at Body Cycle Studio.

10:30 p.m. — Playlisting made me hungry, and I need something sweet. I have two squares of dark chocolate with peanut butter and a glass of almond milk.

11 p.m. — Bed

Daily total: $0

Thursday

Photograph courtesy Jenna Stern.

5:45 a.m. — Alarm goes off, but I snooze till 6:15. The struggle is real.

6:20 p.m. —  I get my coffee going and chug a glass of warm water.

6:45 p.m. — I pack my meals, grab my book bag and bike over to my friend’s place for our second training session of the week.

8 a.m. — My girl rocks it, and I head to Orangetheory for my morning shift. Once I’m there I have my breakfast: plain Greek yogurt with cinnamon, Stevia, chia seeds, and hemp seeds; a square of the apple pie oatmeal bake;  a tablespoon of peanut butter; and a few banana slices. After I eat, I take a probiotic. I’m really bad at remembering to take vitamins.

9:15 p.m. — I hop in on a Orangetheory class. It’s an endurance day, woof.

11 a.m. — I rinse off, change, and am back behind the desk. I have a post workout Orgain shake with the other half of banana I have leftover from breakfast, then I get some cleaning done around the studio.

Photograph courtesy Jenna Stern.

1 p.m. — I’m done at Orangetheory and I head to La Colombe for a coffee with cinnamon and oat milk and eat two hard boiled eggs ($2.25). It’s nice to have time for a coffee break. I’m also able to check in with a nutrition client and listen to my Drake playlist. My ride is full tonight and I’m so excited!

2 p.m. — I’m at Athleta for an afternoon of event prep.

4 p.m. — I have a big salad with roasted tofu and avocado cilantro dressing.

6 p.m. — I eat a handful of dark chocolate chips, raw trail mix, and an orange before I teach.

6:30 p.m. — It’s Drake night at Body Cycle Studio. Let’s get it!

7:30 p.m. — Drake night was everything and more! I bike home; it’s shower and dinner time.

8:30 p.m. — I’m on the couch watching RuPaul with my roommate and eat the rest of the turkey patties, roasted veggies, lavash bread, and pea mash. I’m so happy I was able to prep my dinners this week!

9 p.m. — We both want ice cream, but we realize we don’t have any. We get a pint of peanut butter cup Ben and Jerry’s and Halo Top Oatmeal Cookie that we order off of Go Puff ($6). We both have some of each and it’s perfect. I’ve learned that if I restrict myself from what I really want I end up bingeing on other junk later, so I take a nice-size portion and enjoy every spoonful.

10:45 p.m. — Bag is packed and I’m in bed!

Daily total: $8.25

Friday

Photograph courtesy Jenna Stern.

5:45 a.m. — Alarm goes off, I snooze till 6.

6:15 a.m. — I get my coffee going.

6:30 a.m. —  I drink a glass of warm water and take my coffee to go! I have a 7 a.m. spin class I teach Friday mornings at City Fitness Logan Square.

6:35 a.m. — I grab my book bag, a Orgain shake, and a banana and bike to the gym.

7 a.m. — I have more people in class than I thought. It’s a great way to start Friday!

8 a.m. — Class is done. I change, eat the banana, and drink some coffee. Then I’m off to take my friend Melissa’s hot power fusion class at CorePower Yoga.

10:30 a.m. — Class was exactly what I needed. After class, I shower and change, drink an Orgain shake, and take a probiotic.

11 a.m. — Events are POPPIN’ at Athleta this weekend. One of our brand ambassadors is teaching a yoga class Saturday morning, and Namaste Nourish is in for their Avo-Yoga event Sunday! I head over to the store for a few hours to prep everything for both of them.

1:30 p.m. — I’m done with work for the day! I meet my friend at Mission Taqueria for a lunch date. We both get margaritas because FRIYAY, and their green juice margs are too good to pass up. We split chips and guac, a mixed salad and a steak burrito. We also split the bill ($35).

4 p.m. — I bike home and couldn’t be more ready for a nap! I’m such a lightweight these days and am feeling that marg.

Photograph courtesy Jenna Stern.

6:30 p.m. — I’m up and drive to Trader Joe’s for my weekly grocery haul. I couldn’t be more pumped because the parking lot is empty! I get all of my favorites, plus a few items to make for dinner for my roommate and I ($117). Then I head home to make dinner and get some prep done for next week!

Daily total: $152

Weekly Totals

Money spent: $184.09

Spin classes taught: 5

Workouts done: 5

Cups of coffee: 10

Protein shakes: 3
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