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Brynn and Josh Himes

Best Of 2017 Winners!

Living Without Fear

2018 Gym Guide

Remix Your Playlist JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2018



Exposure What was running through your mind before, during, and after the pull? "It was a roller coaster in my head [during the whole event]. At first, I felt glued to the ground. I was getting so mad wondering why I wasn’t able to move this thing, until I heard my wife yell 'It’s moving!' That was all I needed. It began to feel surreal after that. I could sense everyone around me freaking out. Internally, I was doing the same thing, fueling me with more adrenaline. 'You’re pulling a freaking plane,' I thought. I was already imagining how badass the pictures would look. Then it started feeling like quicksand, almost as if the plane was getting heavier and heavier with every step. I had to finish though. About half way through, all that was in my head was the amount of people who might want to try Strongman training after they see this. With each step, my goal of growing a sport I love in a city I love even more came closer and closer to being a reality. Nothing was going to keep me from getting that plane over the line. When I got to the end, all I was thinking was, 'I did it. I really did it!' I wanted to be as hype as everyone circling around me, but I gave it everything I had and basically collapsed.”


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The Music City Strongman, Blake Harris, after pulling an 18,000 pound private airplane over 50 feet at Secure Air Charter. @themusiccitystrongman Carbine @scarbine


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JAN/FEB 2018

10 12 14 16

Publisher’s Letter Contributors #MusicCityFit New to Nashville

NUTRITION 18 Something with Red, Something with White 20 Why Am I Always Hungry? LIFESTYLE 22 Lovers and Fighters 26 Remix Your Playlist 32 Living Without Fear WELLNESS 36 5 At-Home Ways to Reduce and Avoid Stress 38 Ask the Doctor FITNESS 40 Best Of 2017 48 Bodyweight HIIT Workout 52 2018 Gym Guide 58 Events & Races 60 Local Spotlight


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Publisher’s Letter


efore we dive headfirst into 2018, I want to quickly reflect on the last 12 months. For me, 2017 was a dream come true. Nashville Fit Magazine officially launched to the public with four incredible issues and it’s crazy to look back and see how far we’ve came. Because of your unrelenting support and loyal readership, we’re releasing six issues in 2018 with content I am already anxious to share. The beginning of a new year is always a special time for the fitness industry. Gym memberships ramp up, new fitness goals are set, and everyone is excited about bettering their eating habits. What better way to motivate our audience than with The Inspiration Issue? This year, I’ve decided to change the way I look at New Year’s resolutions and give myself a word to live by instead of a specific resolution. My word for 2018 is ‘impact’. I want to impact more people, more groups, and more businesses with our content. While we may seem like just a small business, I believe our impact can be truly life changing. Along with that, NFM is always looking to improve, so this year we’ll be bringing you more behind the scenes looks on our photoshoots, enhanced digital content, more events, and exclusive subscriber benefits. Our cover story includes one of the most humble and generous couples I’ve had the pleasure of meeting. Brynn and Josh Himes story is one of passions and battles, how they are happening inside us every day, and their nonprofit, Fight2Fight that continues to help people worldwide. We’re also highlighting some pretty amazing people in this issue with stories of unbelievable inspiration and the triumph over adversities. If you’re looking to shake things up and feel inspired to try a new gym, we’ve included a Gym Guide. We also have the results of the Best Of 2017 survey included. Did your favorites win? Whether your goal is to make your bed every morning or read four books a month, I hope this issue helps you find a spark for the new year and catapults you into chasing your own goals. Thank you again to everyone who has supported us along the way. We couldn’t have reached 2018 without you.

Stay Music City Fit,

Join Us Online! NashvilleFitMag NashvilleFit NashvilleFitMagazine

Ryan Freebing, Owner

Subscribe! Want this magazine sent directly to your front door or mailbox? Subscribe to our mailing list.


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NFM Team


Brianna Briley

I’m not much for New Year's resolutions. Instead I like to set goals for myself often. I turn 30 next year and my goal is to be in the best shape of my life beforehand.

Weston Carls

Brianna Briley

Weston Carls

Year 2017 was the year of injuries. I was hindered by an injury for six months last year. However, it taught me that I'm not invincible and I need to listen to my body. Today I'm back to 100 percent and will be challenging myself to beat all of my race times from years prior. For me, 2018 will be the year of PRs. If you're not growing (or getting faster), you're dying! Go out there and try to improve from your prior year's accomplishments.

Dani Kammann

Dani Kammann

Lindsay Miller

In reflection, 2017 was all about figuring out my purpose and my “whys”. I recently got engaged to my best friend “Cookie”, and so starts the process of creating a life together. 2018 is all about growing with this other human in mind turning those “my” and “I”, into “our” and “we”. Fortunately we both are in pursuit of the sweat life and have fitness goals that a line with one another. My New Year's Resolution is, aside from saying yes to the dress, to grow our Cookie Cuts business and do an NPC show together. #swolemates

Lindsay Miller

In 2017, I did 5 major things: achieved fitness goals, broke personal barriers, accepted love, got out of my comfort zone, and made choices based on passion and not money. In 2018, there are 5 major things I want to stop doing: living in the past, negative self talk, over thinking and comparing, trying to make everyone happy, and fearing change.

Jeff Waller

1. (Personal) Read two books per month, and spend one-two hours per day focusing on selfimprovement/investment. 2. (Physical) Maintain an active lifestyle, exercising six days per week, with one day being outside of my "normal" workouts. 3. (Personal) Make one international trip, and two domestic trips (to cities that I haven't previously visited).

Jeff Waller JA N / F E B 2 0 1 8 • N AS H V I L L E F I T M AG A Z I N E






Dr. Eric Fishman

Lauren Ringo

Dr. Travis Morgan




Taylor Cooper Dunlap

Haley Cahill

Haley Cahill

Haley is a magazine editor and certified personal trainer. She loves all things fitness—especially weightlifting, boxing at Title Green Hills, and running throughout Nashville. Though she's a huge advocate of a healthy diet, she never turns down a trip to Jeni's or Five Daughters Bakery.

Taylor Cooper Dunlap

Taylor is passionate about health and wellness, specifically through the use of real foods. She believes cooking is a form of therapy, and cooking for other people is a labor of love. You can check out more of her healthy dishes and motivating life insights on Instagram @taylorcooper or her website

Dr. Eric Fishman

Dr. Fishman, also known as, Dr. MONQ, is the founder and CEO of MONQ personal essential oil diffusers and incorporates them into our daily lives, making it a lifestyle, making it personal, and proving why it is effective.


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Through this new technique using ancient knowledge, he can show you how to improve your overall wellness and live a better life.

Dr. Travis Morgan

Owner and operator at Advanced Health & Wellness in Franklin, Dr. Morgan moved to Nashville 2014 to begin his own chiropractic center. When he’s not helping others achieve their optimal health potential, Dr. Morgan spends his free time enjoying time with his family, playing golf, boating, and watching his beloved St. Louis Cardinals.





Lauren Ringo

Lauren is personal trainer, event coordinator, and student at Belmont University. Her passion for a healthy lifestyle is continually inspired by her community and the 11 years that she played indoor and sand volleyball. When she’s not lifting, running, or training clients, she’s enjoying Nashville’s variety of tacos or acai bowls.

Nashville Fit Magazine assumes no responsibility for the content of articles or advertisements, in that the views expressed therein may not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher or any magazine employee or contributor. This publication and all of its contents are copyrighted. PLEASE RECYCLE THIS MAGAZINE

How are you











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@torchfit JA N / F E B 2 0 1 8 • N AS H V I L L E F I T M AG A Z I N E


o t w ne

CrossFit East Nashville 400 Davidson Street, Nashville, TN 37206 CrossFit East Nashville recently opened a 16,000 square-foot facility right in the heart of East Nashville, just a short distance from Nissan Stadium and the downtown area. CrossFit East Nashville reflects a deep passion for health, fitness, and community and offers unique programming to meet the needs of all members. The facility is equipped with state of the art equipment and a passionate and friendly coaching staff. Co-founder and head coach, Caleb Gregory, intentionally programs workouts to help members build strength, increase aerobic capacity, and live an overall healthier lifestyle. He does this using a threetiered approach, including function, fitness, and competition. More importantly, he leads a unique culture that fosters deeply-rooted community. Offering free community workouts every Saturday at 10 a.m., CrossFit East Nashville hopes that every member and guest that walks through the door feels welcome and valued.


Johnson & Hayes Physical Therapists 740 Cool Springs Blvd Suite 215, Franklin, TN 37067 Johnson and Hayes Physical Therapists is a new privately-owned clinic in Franklin/Cool Springs. First established in Huntsville in 2003 by Scott Johnson and Todd Hayes, J&H has continued to value the personal patienttherapist relationship by making sure each patient works with the same physical therapist during each visit. “We want to make every visit count for our patients, we know their time is valuable. Rather than spending 10 minutes catching up with a new therapist, we want to get right to work,” states Johnson. “Staying with the same therapist adds to the patient experience, and people notice the difference,” adds Hayes. While the owners continue to treat patients in Huntsville, they have hired David Jennings, a Board-Certified Clinical Specialist in Sports Physical Therapy, to manage the Franklin clinic. He comes from Division I athletics, working as an athletic trainer at Louisiana State University and Vanderbilt University before completing the sports physical therapy residency program at the Vanderbilt Orthopaedic Institute. Jennings is trained in dry needling, but uses expert exercise progression to teach his patients how to move more efficiently without pain. “I’m excited about the opportunity to work with individuals in Franklin who want to feel better; whether that’s in competitive athletics, or playing with grandkids,” says Jennings.


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Southside Strength & Conditioning 4055 Arno Rd, Franklin, TN 37064 SouthsideTN Southside Strength & Conditioning is a new strength training facility owned by coaches/ trainers Luke Huntzinger and David Williamson located in Franklin, TN. Our mission is bringing our members “back to the basics” with training and nutrition. An owner is always at Southside to build relationships with our members, offer coaching, and here as a resource to help each member towards their fitness goals. Southside is proud to offer some of the most unique equipment in the Nashville area, including a monolift, a Matt Wenning belt squat, and a reverse hyper, just to name a few. Southside also offers a variety of specialty training including Crossfit by Crossfit FreeFlow, Olympic weightlifting by Dynamic Weightlifting, strength camps, boot camps and personal training. Our atmosphere sets Southside apart from other gyms in the area from our music, to our hands-on coaching with all of our members, to hosting seminars every month, and even hosting an upcoming powerlifting meet in March. They have only been open a couple months and still have much more coming in the future.

Frothy Monkey – The Nations 1400 51st Ave N, Nashville, TN 37209 Frothy Monkey is the breakfast through dinner coffeehouse featuring creative folks using quality ingredients (local when possible) to prepare original dishes served in a cozy, approachable atmosphere. They offer breakfast, brunch every day until 5 p.m., and dinner with expanded beverage offerings to include coffeehouse standards, craft beer, wine and cocktails. Other highlights include a kids menu, gluten-free options, vegetarian/vegan friendly, and mindful of other dietary needs. Frothy Monkey is REAL certified by The United States Healthful Food Council. The 3,500 square-foot space is designed to serve a wide variety of customers with a mix of seating including tables, booths, bar stools, community tables, and private dining. Like their other locations, you will find families enjoying brunch, an ideal date spot, the perfect place to sit and work, have a business meeting, or grab a drink after work. Check out their Happy Hour 2-4-1 select beer and wine, Monday through Friday 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. They also offer onsite and offsite catering, and a private event space that will hold approximately 40 guests. Wine Down Wednesday is every Wednesday at 5 p.m. until 7 p.m.

M.A.D.E. Fitness 1420 Donelson Pike, Suite A1, Nashville, TN 37217 M.A.D.E. Fitness is not a new name to Music City, serving the Nashville community since 2009. Their innovative and intense style of training yields results that speaks for itself. Co-owners Omar Edwards, Bronson Colbert, and Nate Dary have created a culture that makes members feel right at home when you join their community. Their recent move to a new location brings new excitement and energy to the gym. Known for their work with numerous pro, collegiate, and high school athletes across all sports, they bring that same energy to everyone who comes through the door. M.A.D.E. Fitness is the next generation of training, redefining fitness in Nashville and the surrounding areas. If you're willing to put the time and effort into maximizing your fitness results, M.A.D.E. Fitness is the place for you. They provide nutritional coaching and offer a meal prep service called M.A.D.E. Meals. Bootcamps range from bodyweight HIIT workouts, to agility training and hardcore weightlifting. Between seven personal trainers, the one-on-one and small group training covers all aspects of fitness. If you're not afraid of hard work, stop by today to get started or elevate your fitness journey!

Well Body Pilates 4304 Charlotte Ave, Suite F, Nashville, TN 37209 Since opening in April of 2016, boutique movement studio Well Body Pilates has established itself as the go-to for high-quality and holistic Pilates and Gyrotonic training at its gorgeous East Nashville studio. Due to popular demand, Well Body will continue to grow their community by adding a second location on Charlotte Avenue in January. Founded by professional dancer and movement expert, Elizabeth Wilkinson, the new studio is particularly special to this Nashville native who grew up close by in Sylvan Park. Keeping with the tradition of the East Nashville location, Well Body Pilates offers a wide range of private training in Pilates and The Gyrotonic Method as well as small, intimate group Reformer and mixed Pilates Equipment classes. The new West Nashville location will also feature onsite massage and wellness coaching, and a boutique filled with high end athletic wear, fitness props, and more. In addition, they offer in depth teacher training certification and continuing education in the unique Well Body Pilates Method. The team of highly experienced teachers focuses on guiding students in the journey in finding deeper connection in their bodies, to create a life of movement. JA N / F E B 2 0 1 8 • N AS H V I L L E F I T M AG A Z I N E




Something with Red, Something with White Looking for a night in? How about one with the comfort of a warm blanket, tray table, and maybe some well-deserved downtime? Sounds good, right? You can add the suggested wine, your girlfriends, or a snuggle buddy, but don’t add complications in the kitchen. Whether these recipes become staple pieces to your busy life, or special plans on Valentine’s Day, they are simple, healthy and well paired with red and white wines for flavor. Check out the easy instructions:

h t wit rne red Cabe i a P ile us mo & Ex ony Love n A by

Filet with Roasted Carrots Ingredients: 6-7 oz. filet (if using a smaller filet, cut down on baking time) 3 carrots, peeled (the rule of thumb is three carrots per person, so you can double this recipe as you see fit) Salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika— for seasoning fresh rosemary, for garnish 2 Tbsp. avocado oil 1 Tbsp. grass-fed butter

How to: Filet 1. Heat oven to 425 degrees. 2. Heat cast iron skillet over mediumhigh heat, add avocado oil. 3. Season filet liberally on all sides with salt, pepper, garlic powder. 4. Once skillet is hot, add filet and let sear for 2 minutes, then flip and sear an additional 2 minutes. 5. Transfer skillet to oven and let filets continue to cook for 5 minutes (this will yield medium-rare steaks). 6. Remove skillet from oven, transfer filets to a plate, put a smear of butter on top of each, and cover with aluminum foil to let rest for 5 minutes before serving. 7. Finally, top with rosemary and serve. Roasted Carrots 1. Heat oven to 425 degrees. 2. Rub carrots with avocado oil, and season on all sides with salt, pepper, and paprika. 3. Place carrots on a baking sheet and roast in oven for 40-45 minutes, flipping over halfway through.


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ith on d w uvign e e r i a Pa us S & Exil ve mo ony by Lo n A c n Bla

Seared Salmon with Whipped Sweet Potatoes + Wilted Spinach Ingredients: 4 oz. salmon filets 2 Tbsp. avocado oil (this is my favorite choice for pan searing due to its high smoke point) Himalayan sea salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika—for seasoning Juice of 1/2 lemon 1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut into cubes 3-4 Tbsp. grass-fed butter 2 cups baby spinach

How to: Salmon 1. Heat your oven to 400 degrees. 2. Heat a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat, add oil to skillet and allow it to get hot. 3. Pat salmon filets dry, season with salt, pepper, and paprika. 4. Add salmon filets to hot skillet (skin side up). 5. Allow to sear for 3-4 minutes, then flip salmon over (so the skin side is on the bottom), transfer skillet to preheated oven and cook for 4 more minutes. If you prefer your salmon a bit more flakey you can leave it in for 6 minutes.

6. Remove from oven and transfer salmon to a plate to rest. At this point, you may peel off the skin. Sweet Potato 1. Bring 4 cups of water to a boil, add your cubed sweet potato and allow to boil for about 8-10 minutes (or until potato is easily pierced with a fork). 2. When potatoes have softened, drain the water, and add them to your food processor. You may have to do this in several rounds if they won’t all fit. 3. Add butter and several shakes of salt and puree until velvety smooth. Note: it helps to pulse, then stir, and pulse more. Spinach 1. Heat a non-stick skillet over medium heat. 2. Add lemon juice and spinach, then season with salt, garlic powder, and paprika and cook until wilted. This shouldn’t take more than a minute or two.

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Why Am I Always Hungry? Hunger is your brain telling you that your body is low on fuel and needs to be replenished. Food is fuel, although in today’s society we have forgotten that. We more commonly view food as pleasure. The science behind how the brain is connected to hunger actually takes you back to a better understanding of our ancestors. “Hunger” use to be a genuine feeling that triggered primal reactions. Now, we tend to confuse hunger with boredom, thirst, or addiction. That is why every time we “diet” or eat fewer calories our body sends messages to your brain saying we need more. We have developed habits that send those similar signals that say “feed me” when in reality it isn’t what your body needs. We have evolved our brain and bodies into miscommunication. We’re lucky enough to have access to foods that are inexpensive and easy to find if we choose, but we’ve evolved from our ancestors who lived in a feast or famine world. Under those conditions, it was often necessary for the human body to store fat. Luckily, there is a science-based explanation for why weight loss is so hard. Turns out, it’s driven by genetics, aging, and other lifestyle factors such as diet, exercise, sleep and stress. Losing and gaining weight can be more difficult for others as most of us have probably experienced. While research shows there are biological explanations for hunger, such as the increase in the hunger hormone ghrelin or a variety of others, it is ultimately more practical to learn how to tell if you’re actually hungry. Here are a couple tips. 20

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Slow Down Take your time with your meal. It’s not going to run off the table. Remember, food is fuel. If we are going to train ourselves out of eating for pleasure, then we should slow down the process and enjoy the flavors that fuel us. A small study of 20 overweight adults compared what happened when participants were told to finish the same amount of ice cream at different amounts of time. When they were given five minutes to wolf down the ice cream, they rated feeling hungrier and less satisfied than when they were instructed to savor it for 30 minutes. Taking time to chew and taste your food enhances the actual enjoyment and perception of your own hunger—so don’t rush.

Choose Foods High in Protein and Fiber These three nutrients are linked to satisfaction, especially in your gut. Meaning, they’re good at stifling your appetite after you eat. Focus on filling up with the average nutrient rich foods such as fruits, vegetables, lean protein, and wholegrains. It helps to keep these things on hand so you don’t get caught off-guard when hunger does strike, prolonging the next encounter. I could over complicate things by explaining the difference in complex and simple carbs, but we all know it’s better to keep it simple. Start with these:

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big breakfast items with fiber rich grains, nuts and fruits in small portions for snacks, and a fist size of protein after workouts. These items are as dulled down and as easy as it gets. If you can stick to small goals that fill you up, you can build toward bigger goals without added anxiety. Drink Water Probably the most common but underutilized answer to hunger is water. We have all heard the popular question: Are you really hungry–or just thirsty? Try putting those blender bottles filling up your dishwasher to good use. Always have access to water, and not just, “the fountain around the corner.” Keep something within arms reach. If we trained our brain to first be satisfied with thirst, you’d be pleasantly surprised how your stomach would feel. Thirst is the most common mistaken quality for hunger. H2O cures 90 percent of illnesses—seriously! From acne to headaches, it is the most necessary thing we can put in our system. It is needed in order for our cells to make use of the nutrients in our food. If we lack this nutrient availability, it causes our body to crave more food. This is a good reason to drink water throughout the day and not just when hunger cravings strike. Remove the Obvious Stress Sadly, the slightest “stressful” event in your life, such as losing your phone or being late for a meeting, can send us reaching for processed snacks. But there’s a reason why stress makes us hungry. Stress raises cortisol levels for an extended amount of time, which increases our appetite. This fightor-flight response makes our body think it needs to refuel. This would highly support the overweight population in our hyper-productive society and explain why stress eating is a common issue. Our body is responding to the brain’s messages that say we are over working and now need more fuel to continue our day. Their body urges you to stock up on the foods that it thinks will be most useful after the stress simulated response and unfortunately, they crave carbohydrates and fats. The accumulation of stress induced eating and the fight-or-flight response throughout the body is not healthy. It leads to possible adrenal issues, confused hormones, and over consumption, which are a entirely new set of problems. While we all have times when we are not able to control exactly what's happening in our life that makes us stressed, we can control what we're putting in our body to help handle it.

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Lovers 22

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AND FIGHTERS There is a common vulnerability when you put forth all your effort and heart into something—and Brynn and Josh Himes are no stranger to this connection. They went from a head-down-work-hard concentration on their careers to a head-over-heels focus on one another. Their love, their drive, and their passion for giving has become the common ground in which they’ve built their lives on today. BY LINDSAY MILLER



osh Himes grew up in Monaca, Pa., a small town outside of Pittsburgh. He debuted in professional boxing in 2014. Himes has a professional records of only two losses and eleven wins, six of them being knockouts, with a total of fifty-three fights as an amateur and professional fighter combined. Himes is also the ABA champion and the current UFA All-American champion as a cruiserweight—weighing in at 200 pounds. Himes called 5th Street Gym his home base while living in South Beach in Miami, Fla. where motivational stories about boxers like Muhammad Ali fill the room. While living in Miami, all Josh did was train. Boxing was his life, and he woke up and went to bed with one thing on his mind. He said, “When I met Brynn, I was like, ‘I’m movin’ to Nashville! Goin’ to learn the Boot-Scootin’ Boogie!’ And now we’ve lived here over two years.” Brynn Marie Cirota was raised in Carmichaels, Pa., about 60 miles south of Pittsburgh. She found herself drawn to country music, and after winning a talent contest sponsored by a local radio station, she applied herself to music full time, giving up her spot on the dance team at California University of Pennsylvania. “I got an opportunity to go overseas and play for our military on an AFE Tour for three weeks in the Middle East,” she said. “That changed my life. I saw how music can make you forget your problems. After that trip, I came back home, packed my bags, and moved to Nashville." Her drive and focus meant no downtime. Especially in the beginning, when she was learning the music business from scratch. She was doing her own booking, publicity, promotion, and even graphic

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design and produced everything from her album covers to music videos. She worked constantly, which led to touring as the opening act for rock legends Pat Benatar and Cheap Trick. While Josh Himes was scrolling through his Twitter feed one night, he came across a retweet from a local station in Pittsburgh that caught his immediate attention. “It was Brynn’s picture,” he said. “I saw it and I said, ‘I’m going to marry that girl.’ I kid you not.” Josh said, “I’m living in Miami at the time and there are millions of girls there, but I was focused on my career. I didn’t care about any of that.” A little rusty on the dating scene, Josh’s dating methods might have seemed unorthodox. “As soon as I saw Brynn’s picture, I called the radio station like a crazy person. But I actually did know the DJ. They wanted to talk to me about a fight coming up and I said, ‘No, no, no, who is Brynn Marie? Tell me about her.” The guys at the radio station described Brynn as, “a good Christian girl” and mentioned that she was Italian, which immediately had Josh hooked. He asked them to reach out to her and to tell Brynn he said, “Hi.” That was all. Just “Hi.” At this time Brynn was living in Nashville. Travelling and touring and staying busy with her music. When her friend at the radio station called her she thought, “No thanks, I’m not looking for love.” But her friend insisted she give him a chance. “The first thing Josh told me was, ‘he is a professional athlete,’ and I thought, ‘Strike one!’ then he tells me his nickname is “The Handsome Hitman,” and I thought ‘Strike two, this guy knows he is handsome.’ Then he tells me he lives in South Beach Miami, and I just thought, ‘Strike three! That is not happening!’” Brynn said. “Oh yeah, I struck out before she even met me,” Josh added. “Really I just thought I had nothing to relate to. I didn’t think we would have anything in common,” Brynn explained. “My friend called me back and said, ‘Come on, reach out to him. He’s from the Pittsburgh area, he’s a good Christian, and comes from a big Italian family.” This made Brynn think differently.

“We immediately had a connection and talked over the phone every day for an entire month. I didn’t meet Brynn until a month after we started talking, but three weeks after we spoke, I invited her father and her two brothers—who are both older than me—to one of my fights. This took grandi palle,” Josh admits. “The fight was in Morgantown, W. Va., and I sent three ring side tickets to their house,” said Josh. Brynn remembered, “I didn’t even get to go. My dad met Josh before I did. But I warned him that my dad was a strong, hardheaded Italian.” Her brothers told Josh he had to not only win his fight, but knock the guy out if he wanted to take Brynn on a date. “Talk about pressure,” Josh said. “I knocked the guy out in the fourth round. He had a rock head. And a week later I got to meet Brynn. But even before we met, we knew. I knew. And in five months, we were married.” “Our first date was his brother’s wedding. Our first kiss was at my grandma’s house.” Brynn recalled while laughing. They joke about being family oriented, but it couldn’t be more true. Both with strong personalities and big families, they are fire and gasoline to be around and light up the room with their positivity and love for one another. It is a constant back and forth with jokes and laughter. “We were actually at my parents house one day and I was climbing a tree.” Brynn said. “Josh yelled at me, ‘Hey! Before you get hurt, will you marry me?’ and it sounds funny, but it was real. And I love real.” “Right after the wedding, I packed up my things, drove 15 hours from Miami to surprise her here in Nashville and we started looking for a house. We’ve been in this house two years now.” And although it may seem like everything in their lives changed fast, it seems more like they followed their intuition. Either way, as Josh says, “Weight broke the wagon.” They both went from completely focused on their careers to completely focus on one another.



rynn likes to tell the story of Josh’s first experience with boxing. “He just walked into a boxing gym and said he found himself. He thought, ‘This is my path and this is what I am meant to do.’ And I love that story because that is how I felt about music.” As husband and wife, they made their individual passions work together. Brynn and Josh support each other's career and the drive that comes with it. This is something that brought them together. “We fight hard, but we love hard,” they both say, with reference to their Italian backgrounds. But Josh isn’t one of those have-to-hate-the-guy-to-fight-him type of athletes. “He always wishes his opponents luck before a fight!” Brynn exclaimed. And Josh added, “At the end of the day it is a sport. A tough sport. But I want people to go home to their families, so I wish them luck and a safe fight.” However, there is a moment when things change. Brynn says his eyes change once his hands are wrapped. They both have ways of recognizing when Josh is ready to fight. “Boxing is a very mentally challenging sport, and people can be unpredictable. I have to be prepared for the worst case scenario,”


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Josh said. And while he understands this in the ring, he and Brynn have also learned to understand a different meaning of unpredictable. In January 2017, Josh and Brynn launched a charity called Fight2Fight, an idea that sparked while Brynn’s brother was battling his second round of cancer. “We couldn’t be there with him in the beginning stages because Josh was getting ready for a big fight,” Brynn said. “So while Josh was training, we would Facetime Tony. Josh would say, ‘Tony, you are a fighter! I’m going to win this fight for you, man.’And Tony would say back to him, ‘OK! I’m going to win this fight for you.’ So it was a back and forth conversation all the time. But our hearts were back and forth too, because we couldn’t physically be there with him.” “For her brother, perception is reality. And we were telling him, ‘You’re a fighter!’ repeatedly,” Josh said. “The positivity was changing him. We saw his eyes light up and he would say, ‘You’re damn, right! I am a fighter!’ And his chemo was kind of like his training camp.” Brynn had the idea to have a shirt made that just said “Fighter” because she felt that whoever wore that shirt deserved to feel liberated. “It wasn’t just about Josh being in a boxing ring as a

professional fighter,” Brynn said. “My brother was fighting cancer and he was really in a battle for his life. I wanted him to feel empowered, along with anyone else that wanted to wear that shirt.” Thus the name Fight2Fight came to life as Josh said the impact of this experience went from fight to fight and from fighter to fighter. “We saw the impact it had on Tony,” Josh says, “And we wanted that impact to be worldwide, with anybody who is fighting something. Abuse, addiction, you name it: There are all kinds of fights people are facing. Everyone is fighting something.” Once Brynn and Josh were able to spend some time with Tony in Chicago, Josh began taking Tony to the boxing gym. “Tony would put the gloves on and hit Josh,” Brynn said. “This was a guy doing chemo 12 hours a day and he felt like a champion in the ring.” “He got so much joy out of hitting me,” Josh joked. And so began another component of Fight2Fight. Tony is now forty years old and partially deaf. He faced more struggle than the average person may ever experience. His strength and perseverance inspired the entire movement for Brynn and Josh to make a difference. Brynn said the overall mission is to “give hope and inspiration to everyday fighters through music and boxing.” They want to pass on the strength they found in Tony. Boxing and music together provided a mind, body, and soul experience. So they chose to share the two avenues with the Fight2Fight charity by travelling around to different groups and sharing the story of their own fight. “Has anyone ever come up to you and asked, ‘What do you fight for?’” Brynn said. They ask this question to everyone at their events. “When you think about that question, it takes you back. It makes you think about your purpose. We’ve noticed walls come down quickly and people begin to identify with what they are fighting for. You photo by Brandon Adams

would be surprised at the emotional response some people have,” she said. “It’s almost like no one has ever asked them that before.” They have witnessed some tears, some aggression, and some real strength, but what Josh says is the most interesting is that everyone has something to fight for. Once the participant identifies their fight, they write it down and tape it to a mit. Then they attack their fight, physically. “This way they visually see what they are fighting for. When they get tired, we push them to go one more round. It can get emotional.” “A boxing ring can also represent life too,” Brynn explained. “Sometimes we have to realize that people can only fight their own fight. Like boxing, I can’t jump in the ring with Josh. However, you can bet I’m working his corner and supporting him in anyway I can. While people are punching the mits, everyone is cheering them on. We try to create that support system, similar to what happens at a boxing match.” The most rewarding feeling for this couple is being able to see people gain the motivation to fight harder and in turn, see them change.Josh and Brynn do their best every chance they get to allow people to understand that simple truth about themselves. The results in their sessions are nothing short of cathartic. Fight2Fight has opened a number of doors and hearts, taking participants out of their comfort zones. It also recently became an official 501(c)3 nonprofit, encouraging Josh and Brynn to continue to bring the fight to everyone they can. We never know the battles that others face, but we can always find it in our hearts, as Josh and Brynn have, to love and inspire others to face their demons and fight back. Note: Tony was victorious in his fight and is now cancer-free.

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Remix Your Playlist

Starting a new year, for some, means getting back on the fitness train. Just like a new pair of shoes or outfit can give you that extra edge of motivation, updating your playlist with some fresh beats can have the same effect. Fitness instructors that use music to amp up their classes are the DJs of the fitness world, always staying up-to-date on the recent hits and hottest remixes. We asked some of our favorite instructors to tell us what jams are topping their charts to begin 2018. PHOTOS BY MORGAN CARR


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Beccah Lenhart

Verticity Cycling Instructor My favorite part about combining spin and music is the total connection you have between your body and mind. You get 45 minutes to become completely in tune physically and mentally, removing all thought from the process so you can lose yourself in the music. It’s like dancing for those of us (me) that don’t dance. During a workout, I want my riders to feel empowered. I’m less focused on the physical outcome of the ride than I am on the mental. It’s all about leaving the room feeling a little stronger, a little braver, and a little more badass than when you clipped in. When I want to get serious about a workout and crank up the volume, “Say Less” by Dillon Francis (ft. G-Eazy) is one of my gotos. It’s just angry and in-your-face enough to be motivating without being too overwhelming. A song I like that gets into people's heads (in a good way) is “Power” by Kanye West. It’s a classic pump up jam that everyone knows, and as soon as it comes on you can see a switch flip in people and they really get into their ride. Another song I turn up when I want to feel inspired is “Pumpin Blood” by NONONO. It’s one of those songs where you feel like you can take on the world.

Chase Tucker

Personal Trainer and Fitness Coach Music is the canvas I paint with my physical efforts. If I’m lifting heavy and need to summon some more strength, I’m throwing paint at a canvas of hardhitting, hip-hop beats, or bass-heavy EDM. If I’m listening to classical music, my exercises are more precise and focused brushstrokes. As a personal trainer, I always want my clients to know that their self-love and envisioned future are worth creatively overcoming obstacles. When I want to feel strong, I listen to “Sleigh Bells” by Kids. When I want to feel happy, I listen to “My Way” by Frank Sinatra. It’s a classic. When I want to feel inspired, I listen to “Requiem: Lacrimosa” by Mozart.

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Adam Gardner

HOTBOX Kickboxing & Yoga Instructor My favorite part about being a DJ and a fitness instructor is much like my love for teaching. I get to create a unique experience with others by making something out of nothing. Without people there would be no DJ. Without students there would be no teacher. Realizing this and putting yourself in the shoes or on the yoga mat of others makes you a part of the experience with them. It's about getting together and creating a moment. Music has always been a part of my life. Ever heard of the stanky leg? Yeah, the doctor grabbed mine, ripped me out of the


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womb, and I immediately started dancing! Music is also the main reason why I moved to Nashville seven years ago. If you told me I would eventually become the No. 1 DJ in Nashville, I would have called you crazy! My body is like an engine. Music is my fuel. When I slam on the gas I feel exhilarated. The same feeling you get when that song hits you. And when it hits you, you almost don't want to let off the gas pedal. You want to go faster and harder. Hold on to that feeling. It'll take you far. One song that’s fueling me right now is “Humble (Skrillex Remix)” by Kendrick Lamar. I honestly don't have a go-to warm-up song, but I do enjoy throwing on “Can’t Get

Enough” by Lookas. I think it's important to “play to the room” though, so I always have a couple songs in my pocket I can go to if my planned playlist isn't fitting the room. If it’s a yoga class, I like “I’m God (San Holo Edit)” by Clams Casino to get everyone moving. When it's been a lit kickboxing class and it’s time to cool down, I’ll play “Issues (Encore Trap Music)” by Julia Michaels while I guide my class through some stretches. When it's a euphoric yoga class, I may end it with “Your Hand in Mine” by Explosions in the Sky for savasana. Above all, I really just want everyone to have fun and push the pedal to the floor! Music is life, enjoy the journey.

Tori Ross

CycleBar The Gulch Instructor Indoor cycling is more than just a workout to me; it’s therapy. I love getting the chance to help my riders reach their fullest potential every time they clip in. If I'm able to help just one person change for the better, that is everything to me. I grew up in a house that celebrated all types of music. Some of my earliest memories include listening to some of the most iconic artists like Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Stevie Wonder, and Madonna. To me, music is the ride. When I want to feel strong, I listen to “Black Skinhead” by Kanye West. I don't care what people say about him, I feel powerful when I’m riding to his music. I listen to “Love On Top” by Beyoncé when I want to feel happy. She is my favorite artist of all time. Every song— sad or emotional—puts me in the highest of spirits. Most people come into our cycle theatre to escape, relieve stress, feel strong and comfort. Whatever it may be, I want my riders to feel their absolute best during a workout with me. Before I get on the podium, I try and center myself to a place that will give them just that. I never want someone to leave feeling less than, out of place or overwhelmed. We ride to be better versions of ourselves, and I wholeheartedly believe that. One of my favorite EDM remixes is “Big Girls Cry” by Sia (Odesza Remix). That song inspires me and can change my mood in seconds. It’s not only great to ride to, but it’s also an amazing song to run to as well.

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HOW TO BECOME A MORNING PERSON Now that the days are getting colder, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to get out of bed early for your morning movement. We all know hitting the snooze button for an extra 30 minutes of drowsy sleep can start you off on the wrong foot, so here are a few tips to get you up and ready to have a meaningful, active day.

Shock The Body: Although it might not be the most popular, taking a cold shower in the morning is one of the easiest ways to stimulate your body into alertness. The deep breathing in response to your body’s cool surprise actually increases overall oxygen intake. In turn, your heart rate will also increase, releasing a rush of blood through your entire body. This gives us a natural dose of energy that could be sustainable throughout the rest of your day. Utilize Airplane Mode: I recently spoke with a friend who said they typically wake up to almost 100 notifications on their


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phone every morning. While I couldn’t imagine how many vibrations, pings, dings, and alerts he was getting in the middle of the night, I also couldn’t help but wonder why his cell phone was the first thing he gravitated towards when he woke up. The morning news, text messages, and social media can wait. Set your phone on Airplane Mode before you settle into bed the night before and don’t grab for it as soon as your alarm wakes you up (yes, it will still work). Give your body and brain a chance to wake up first before you expose yourself to the affairs of the day. If you can wait an hour or two before engaging in any digital activity, you’ll be calm, cool, and collected when you do. Sweat Early: Engaging in a morning workout is said to be the equivalent of an all-natural cup of coffee, without the jitters. Even if you’re not doing a full 60-minute sweat session, getting your body into the groove of a morning movement routine has been shown to improve focus and mental abilities throughout the day too. Not only will you feel awake and have more energy, but your mind will be ready to take on whatever goals you want to crush or obstacles you encounter during the day.

Meditate or Read for Motivation: Remember silence? Your long lost friend? Meditation is like kryptonite to stress, and taking 10 minutes to yourself in the morning can help you relieve anything you woke up with that might steer you away from having a positive and progressive morning. As you become more familiar with centering yourself with meditation, you’ll learn to drown out inhibitors like noise, clutter, mistakes, guilt, stress and traffic. Try an app like Headspace. It has some great “minis” like Breathe, Unwind, Restore, but also categories for Athletes, Moms/Dads, Students, and more. Just the same, reading in the morning can add an extra boost of motivation and stimulate you to craft fresh ideas or rethink old ones. Just like meditation, you’ll have a little break all to yourself which may even teach you that mornings aren't the enemy!

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Remember Your Why: To know your Why is one of the most important things you can do in your life. Keep a notebook or whiteboard close to your bed so when you wake up, it’s the first thing you see and a visual reminder of your Why. Try connecting your Why to an emotion or feeling, so everytime the warm bed calls you back, you associate this action with an emotional outcome. For me, hitting the snooze button might mean sitting in morning traffic, causing me to be late for work or a meeting. Being late makes me feel lazy and embarrassed for being tardy. You can also use a positive feeling as well.

Thank You


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#1 Strength & Conditioning Gym (non-CrossFit) We spent our holidays trying to make 2018 even harder. Good Luck! #kidding (sort of) Come Sweat!






LIVING Without FEAR Heartfelt stories from inspiring athletes.

Corey Walls


orey Walls, a 22-year-old amputee from Westville, Ohio, found his gateway into a fit lifestyle through the Nashville Sled Preds, a sled hockey team that competes with the same rules as typical ice hockey, with the exception of some equipment. Rather than using skates, players sit in individually designed sleds that have two blades. To propel themselves, players use two sticks with picks on the end. It is truly an incredible sport that allows all types of athletes to participate. With the sponsorship of The National Wheelcats, Breakaway Hockey, and On Target 4 Vets, it is possible for athletes with disabilities to accomplish personal goals and become a viable, hardworking member in their communities. The team is a place where the community means everything. It offers the constant challenge to focus on agility, resistance, and balance, all while providing a community of determined individuals who inspire each other to overcome obstacles. The beauty of it is in the diversity—everyone comes together for a common goal, regardless of their experiences or stories. To illustrate one of the many inspirational stories the Sled Preds offers, Walls was born with a leg/foot size discrepancy, causing chronic pain and the inability to participate in many athletic activities later in life. At 18 months old, he was diagnosed with lymphoma, a cancer that starts in the white blood cells. After remission, he relapsed at the age of two. It was difficult for him and his peers to accept his differences, and that contributed to a long and tough journey. However, Walls had hopes of playing sports and participating in the marching band following his first foot corrective surgery in 8th grade. After the surgery, Walls still experienced constant, extreme pain, which had a huge impact on his lifestyle and strength. A few years later, during his sophomore year of high school


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and a week before the state final, Walls broke his foot in half after taking his first step backwards in the halftime show. He continued to march for eight and a half minutes through extreme pain. Later that night, he discovered there was no blood flow to the foot, and after many attempts to stimulate regrowth in his bones, Walls, his family, and their doctors decided that his best chance to live an active life again would be amputation. At only 16 years old, this was the hardest thing for Walls to hear, but he had hope that this could be his chance to make his goals a reality. After his lower left leg was amputated, Walls struggled to find his strength and hope again, but he experienced a significant moment in history that flipped his mentality. During the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, Oscar Pistorius became the first ever amputee to compete in the olympics. Walls expressed, “Sure he came in dead last, but that was the moment I realized I can be more than this. So I decided to fight even harder.” Following this experience, he started weightlifting and training multiple times a day. He was determined to become a paralympian; he wanted people to see how hard it was, and have someone to look up to for strength. His journey didn’t quite flourish until March of 2017 when he heard about the Nashville Sled Preds. There he found the great relief of knowing there’s a huge community that loves the active lifestyle he has always aspired to have. Through the Sled Preds community, Walls experienced the acceptance and strength

that comes with surrounding himself with a group of tenacious guys who are all jumping over hurdles together. “Everyone has a different story and a different situation, so we all inspire each other. The community is everything.” Within this organization, no one is looked down on, and everyone is treated equally, regardless of their age or situation. For Walls, it’s an honor to compete on a team that consists of players who were born with disabilities, injured, and courageously served our country. I had the pleasure of speaking with his teammate and former Marine, Ben Maenza, whose passion is in the intensity of the competition, and the full speed, full contact hockey. It offers him an outlet and the ability to set goals to work toward. “I love it. On the ice, everyone’s disabilities are eliminated. We’re all just playing hockey.” The real inspiration is in this team. It’s astonishing what these guys can do, how strong they are, and how fast they move on the ice. As Walls says, “You do you. You have to find that one simple thing that brings you joy in your life, and I’m having a blast.” The thing about having a community to fall back on, is that they’re always going to be there. They’re the home that you can rely on while you’re jumping your hurdles. A community like the Sled Preds offers a purpose, whether a player can’t walk, has Down syndrome, or has a prosthetic. That’s the amazing thing about it; you can be any kind of athlete and still participate. What it truly means to have a community is to have the greatest thing in the world.

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Amy Beam


Pennsylvania native, Amy Beam was born with a competitive drive and a great sense of humor— two qualities that have made a lasting impact on her lifelong journey. Beam was born without a majority of her left leg. However, this never stopped her from learning to walk, taking swim lessons, and now crushing her goals day in and day out. As a child, Beam’s parents were determined to instill in her a positive attitude and an active lifestyle. While learning to ride a bike, for example, Beam struggled to keep her foot on the pedal, so her parents took a string and tied her foot to the pedal so that she could learn to ride. Her parents gave her the strong background she needed to believe that anything is possible when you put your mind to it and positively embrace who she is. Beam has had a hard time accepting that until recently though. Throughout high school, Beam pushed herself to stay active, even though it came as a challenge. An activity as small as walking usually takes 60-80 percent more energy than someone with both legs. She found it difficult to be accepting of herself and struggled with self-esteem; always trying to blend in and be like everyone else. Beam took the looks and questions from people as a sign that she shouldn’t be different, but her brother-in-law changed her perspective. He told Beam that her outlook on her situation is directly reflected in how she interacts with people. His straight-forward advice helped her realize the more open and relaxed she is, the more approachable she is for the curious. She started to see that those people just didn’t know how to start the conversation. His advice helped her become a stronger individual when she came to Nashville in 2014. With a newly transformed perspective, her approachability brought many more friendships and comfortable situations into her life. “I made situations fun—I was just being me.” After moving to Nashville, she met one of her now closest friends, Erin, who was the first person she had ever met who also has a birth defect. “Up to this point, I was still trying to blend in, but this was the first person who I could connect with on the actual thought process that happens when you ask me to ‘go for a walk’.” This newfound relationship gave her comfort and trust. “I finally stopped trying to look like everyone else and decided to be comfortable in my own skin, loving how I was created and what I’m physically capable of doing.” This budding mindset turned working out from a chore into a celebration of what she can do. Beam recently started kickboxing, where she learned that no one, especially the trainer, was out to get her, but rather there to encourage her. Their motivation helped her to do her best and reach goals she once wouldn’t have thought possible. Today, this “all or nothing” 25-year-old leads through example. Her Instagram and blog, “One Leg to Stand On,” creates a space where she can be honest and encouraging. “If I want to encourage others to do something, I need to do it myself.” Her perspective is that a lot of people—almost everyone—comes to the gym with their


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own obstacles, but they don’t get attention for it the way she does. Therefore, she strives to earn the attention that she gets: “when I work out, I don’t want to be the girl that they have to make it easier for. I’m competitive and I want to do more.” Her movement is something she believes to never take for granted. During her first year in Nashville, Beam broke her wrist while working out and realized that she had been taking the movement she was capable of for granted. “I had always put myself down for things I couldn’t do, but I was so humbled and grateful for what I am capable of doing.” This experience not only instilled a sense of gratitude, but also pushed her to try nearly everything she could. Climbing, boxing, interval training, kayaking, and paddleboarding all became objectives and her competitive nature and honesty resonates with her followers and readers. She wants her life and her Instagram to exhibit these qualities as well. “I realized a ton of people who don’t have physical disabilities struggle with self-confidence too, so if anything I do inspires people or encourages someone to try something new, even if I look foolish,” she says with a laugh, “it’s worth it.” It’s been rewarding for Beam to be a source of help and inspiration for someone going through a difficult time, whether they are dealing with amputation or body confidence. She tries to give her best advice and pass on all the encouragement she has received from her family, friends, and trainers. Her biggest piece of advice is to stay determined and grateful. “I always want to give the most everyday because I might not be able to do it tomorrow. If I get hurt again and can’t work out, would I be proud with yesterday’s work?” This sense of gratitude and strength has led her to see that her rocky path just proves she is alive and well.

“When I wake up in the morning, I will strive higher, rise above obstacles, and live in victory.”

Armia Habib


can't do anything about the past, and I don't know what the future holds, but when I wake up in the morning, I will strive higher, rise above obstacles, and live in victory.” These are the words of Armia Habib, a 27-year-old who lost both of his legs to a train accident in his home country, Egypt. Running to catch a train, Habib fell on the broken sidewalk, causing both of his legs to slip under the train. He described the misery and pain in that moment as unthinkable. After the accident, things didn’t get much easier for Habib. At the time of the injury, Habib weighed 231 pounds, and his only form of exercise now was moving from the wheelchair to his bed. He was experiencing so much pain that it was even difficult for his family to bear, and his social life dwindled dramatically. He didn’t want to see anyone, whether they were strangers or friends; they all made him feel incomplete by the way they looked at him. Going out wasn’t easy either. A majority of the Egyptian streets and sidewalks were made of dirt, and many places were not accessible due to a lack of ramps. He found interest and spent a majority of his time learning Photoshop and graphic design, freelancing for businesses and his church. It wasn’t until he started noticing the strength in his arms from pushing his wheelchair around that he felt a desire to do more. So began his fitness journey. Habib started exercising in his garage, doing wide push-ups and dips between boxes. Next, he invested in a pull-up bar that he was able to lower to make accessible, and one year from the time of his accident, Habib did his first pull-up. After that, it got crazy. Habib started venturing out into gyms in Egypt. Although he struggled to find accessible gyms, he tried his best to made it work. He was trying new exercises and training with his cousins. They spent much of their time learning planks, pull-ups, muscle-ups, and exercises on the parallel bars at his house. Once he moved to Nashville, Habib found an amazing environment in which he could flourish. He discovered many people on social media who were just like him, who conquered their barriers, used their time to gain strength, and have the ability to face anything. Moving from gym to gym, Habib was able to

push himself even more—and eventually he had to find gyms with heavier dumbbells. This journey helped him build more platforms to inspire others in the gym. “People in Nashville encourage me. They always say something like, ‘You inspire me, keep going.’” One individual who made a huge impact on his fitness journey is his trainer Dominique from CrossFit Silver Dragon. She helped him learn proper form, functional fitness and flexibility. Armia continued learning by trying a new movement every day, especially calisthenic movements, which are his favorite type of workout; it allows him to try street workouts and utilize the Nashville Street Workout Park at Ascend Amphitheater. He recently built a gym at home where he can practice these movements more freely, learn new exercises, and, of course, utilize his parallel bars. When it comes to fears, Habib is pushing himself to conquer all that he can. He shared that one of his favorite pictures and proudest moments is when he was doing a handstand on train tracks with a train in the background. This picture is so meaningful to him; at first, he was afraid to even go near a train, but this picture represents his triumph over that fear. “I was under a train and so close to dying, but I was given a reset button and a new life now,” he says. He is a huge advocate of believing everything will be OK and get better if you continue to stay positive. With what he’s been through, everything seems easier to him, and he feels like he can mentally prepare himself for anything. In the midst of his crazy journey, Habib expresses a lot of gratitude for being here and having the opportunity to achieve more and inspire others. He often looks up to Olympians like Michael Phelps and Instagram athletes like Zack Ruhl, admiring their ability to work through pain. He says, “Life is like a game, a hard game. But when you’ve won once, you know how to win again.” He reiterated the importance of understanding patience. When you push yourself, you will get what you want if you understand a certain mindset: if you didn’t get it today, you will get it tomorrow. Habib is a perfect example of patience and the will power and mind it takes to overcome fears, become stronger, and achieve unthinkable goals.

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5 AT-HOME WAYS TO REDUCE AND AVOID STRESS Many of us suffer from stress on a weekly, if not daily basis. It’s easy to turn to medication or therapy to try to solve this problem, and the benefits of these methods are undeniable. However, there are several easy changes you can make in your everyday life to improve your overall health and lower your susceptibility to stress.


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Eat Healthy

You really are what you eat. Putting light, fresh, colorful foods into your body will give you an energized, bright, positive feeling; just as eating heavy, fatty, processed foods is likely to leave you feeling sluggish and foggy. TARGET THE FOLLOWING ELEMENTS FOR A NATURAL MOOD AND BRAIN BOOST:


This chemical is precursor to serotonin, a “feel-good” chemical in your brain. It can be found in turkey, chicken, milk, cheese, bananas, oats, soy, nuts, peanut butter, and sesame seeds, to name a few.

Vitamin B

A deficiency of this can lead to negative thoughts, so keep yourself positive and happy with beef, pork, chicken, leafy greens, legumes, oranges, rice, nuts, and eggs!

Whole Grains

Carbohydrates increase serotonin production, so go for whole wheat pasta and bread.

Herbal supplements like cinnamon leaf, marjoram, and turmeric can also help promote a healthy gut as digestive aids and antiinflammatories.

Sleep Well

A good night’s sleep gives your brain a chance to recharge, which in turn can improve your focus and concentration the next day. Stress and poor sleep habits are a chicken-and-egg scenario: they perpetuate each other. For many people sleep is the easier component to tackle, so here are some tips for improving your sleep: Try to stay on a consistent sleep schedule—go to bed and wake up at similar times each day. This will help set your natural body clock and make it easier for you to feel tired and fall asleep at whatever time is appropriate for you. Make your bedroom a quiet, dark, comfortable environment that you use for sleeping only. Consider a sound machine or a fan for some white noise if you aren’t used to silence. Do relaxing things before bed. Avoid caffeine and artificial light (from television, computers, smartphones) and instead drink green tea or read a book.

Exercise Regularly


Thanks to a certain 2001 romantic comedy, we all know that “exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy.” Endorphins are natural painkillers, so Elle Woods was right. In addition, the fatigue from a good workout (especially in the fresh air) can help you sleep better at night. Don’t worry, you don’t have to drop everything and become a gym rat. Research has suggested that even a 10-minute walk can help relieve stress as well as a 45-minute workout. However, federal guidelines recommend that adults get at least “150 minutes (2 hours and 30 minutes) each week of moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity (such as brisk walking or tennis), 75 minutes (1 hour and 15 minutes) each week of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity (such as jogging or swimming laps), [or] an equivalent combination of moderate- and vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity.”


Talk to People

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Salmon, tuna, lake trout, herring, mackerel, anchovies, and sardines all contain these brain function-boosting healthy fats. You can also take omega-3 supplements.


All proteins in general stimulate the production of norepinephrine (makes sure your brain and body are ready to spring into action) and dopamine (signals to your body when to be calm and content). Examples of protein-rich foods are Greek yogurt, fish, meats, cheese, eggs, nuts, beans, soy, and lentils.

This inhibits serotonin and can lead to irritability. Its diuretic properties can also dehydrate you, making you more susceptible to negative thoughts and tension.


Eating a chocolate bar may feel good at first, but the sugar high is shortlived and coming down from it can actually be similar to withdrawal.


This is a depressant and a diuretic, and like with sugar, the high is short-lived and the withdrawal is often not worth your while.

Processed Foods

Surrounding yourself with people who love and support you is a crucial part of maintaining positivity in your life; we all have moments of weakness and need others to rely on. Evolutionarily, humans are social creatures, so there is a scientific explanation for why we crave company. Friends and family can be just as good as counselors–trusting people makes us feel good. Plus, you never know–maybe someone is having a problem that you can help with!


Make time each day to just sit and check in with your body and your mind—put yourself in time-out! Close your eyes, take a few deep breaths, and escape from the craziness of your surroundings.

These are not the natural substances that your body is used to breaking down, and can either sit in your system for longer or just get stored as fat. JA N / F E B 2 0 1 8 • N AS H V I L L E F I T M AG A Z I N E




Ask the


Q: Is it OK to “pop” or “crack” my knuckles and joints?

A: Even though we may have been told that cracking our knuckles can result in eventual arthritis, recent studies have shown this to be incorrect in regards to the joints in our hands and feet. Attempting to pop your own neck or back, however, may have a different set of effects. The noise you hear when you pop your knuckles and joints is oxygen, hydrogen, and nitrogen bubbles (also known as gas) releasing from the joint capsule. But have no fear, this is considered a natural process. Our joints are hydrated by movement, a process of pulling hydrating fluids in and pushing waste product out. As the joints become restricted or stuck from bad postures, sleep positions, improper work ergonomics, or bad movement during a workout, gas builds up in the joint. When motion is restored, the gas bubble is released, hence the popping or cracking noise. If you’re feeling the need to constantly pop or crack your knuckles and joints, it might mean you have some mobility issues in those areas. It's much safer to leave all that noise up to a professional.


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Q: Am I going to get injured lifting weights or doing HIIT workouts? A: I often hear patients say “I heard [blank] is bad for you”. Fill in the blank with whatever program or movement you would like and the answer will always be, “Well, that’s not necessarily true.” In my opinion, all forms of exercise pose their own levels of risk. While injuries may appear to occur more often in HIIT or Crossfit-style programs that does not necessarily mean they’re philosophy is the cause. Bad movement patterns, improper form, lack of rest, too much weight, poor recovery, or inexperienced programming are the culprits for injuries. Listen to your body and work with an experienced coach (or healthcare provider if you are in pain) when you think modifications are necessary, a movement is aggravating you, or if you feel more rest and recovery should be applied.

St u c k i n a t ra i n i n g rut due to nagging aches, pains or injury?

Come see us! Q: What’s the most common condition people need attention for and how can I prevent it? A: Lower back pain is one of the most common conditions we treat. The problem lies mainly in people don’t know how to diagnose an issue and who to turn to for initial help. First, you’ll need to identify whether or not your lower back is in pain or just sore from improper movement or lifting heavy weight. Soreness generally means the area feels tender when touched or a burning feeling when exercising, and a tight, achy feeling at rest. This can linger for up to 2–3 days. Pain, on the other hand, is typically identified as a sharp ache or discomfort. If you’re having constant pain, you should consider a thorough physical exam. Preventing lower back pain starts with a strong core and proper posture. Low-impact cardiovascular exercise—like swimming or a stationary bike—increases blood flow to the spine, which supplies healing nutrients and hydration to the structures in your lower back. Another important routine is to, of course, stretch before any heavy activities, specifically your hamstrings. Simple hamstring stretching exercises can help decrease the pressure on your pelvis and provide relief across your lower back. Make sure you check with your physical therapist, coach, or doctor first on correct modifications if you already have soreness or pain though. Q: What is laser therapy and how can it help improve my condition? A: Laser therapy uses wavelengths of red and near-infrared light to stimulate the body’s existing ability to heal. Typically it improves healing time, reduces pain, and

increases circulation, meaning a decrease in swelling. Whether treating migraines, tendonitis, bursitis, disc degeneration, arthritis, or simple sprains and strains, the laser can be an incredibly effective tool at reducing pain and drawing water, oxygen, and nutrients to the damaged area. This is going to help the body create an optimal healing environment and ultimately allows patients to get back to their activity faster while reducing the likelihood of reinjury down the road. Q: If I go see a chiropractor once, do I have to see them for the rest of my life? A: It’s a common misconception that you have to see your chiropractor forever after your first visit. It’s also misleading to think you will become “addicted” to the adjustments. Chiropractic works to help the body function at an optimal level, which makes the overall practice significant in lifestyle changes. The benefits of chiropractic include faster healing time from injury, improved immune system response, and a reduction in pain. Chiropractic care means the brain is able to communicate properly with the body and the joints are able to function in a normal capacity. It’s true that you may enjoy the feeling of a pain free body that runs more efficiently, but truth be told, the body does not necessarily depend on providers (chiropractors, massage therapists, etc.). It is beneficial, however, to utilize routine care and maintenance. I always compare it to dental work. Much like cleaning your teeth twice a year at a dentist’s office is a common, public practice, taking care of your joints and spine should be no different. Incorporating chiropractic care into your health routine, is certainly not a bad idea. JA N / F E B 2 0 1 8 • N AS H V I L L E F I T M AG A Z I N E


C h i ro p ra c t i c Re h a b i l i t a t i o n M yofa s c i a l Re l e a s e L a s e r T h e ra py Dry Needling S p i n a l D e co m p re s s i o n

ACHIEVE LASTING RESULTS 2 0 0 1 M a l l o r y L a n e , #3 0 1 Fr a n k l i n , T N 3 7 0 6 7 61 5 - 9 0 5 - 0 1 2 0 Ca l l to d ay t o s c h e d u l e a F R E E co n s u lt a t i o n . a d va n ce d h e a lt h f r a n k l i n . co m

We Asked, You Voted.

Nashville Fit Magazine’s first annual “Best Of Nashville Health and Fitness” results are in! Thousands of you voted on your favorite people and places in lifestyle, nutrition, wellness, and fitness. Read on to see Nashville’s most popular gurus in the industry. If you don’t see your favorite on the list, make sure to get involved next year by casting your vote!


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Lifestyle Best Hair Salon: 1. Parlour 3 Owned by Melissa Schleicher, Parlour 3 has a loyal celebrity clientele, a stunning interior, and an incredible team of talented stylists. 2. Local Honey 3. Elan HAIR

Tash Weddle, Fittest CEO

Best Local Nonprofit: 1. Nashville Dolphins Founded in 2003, the Nashville Dolphins aquatics program now serves over 200 children and adults with special needs year-round. 2. The New Beginnings Center 3. Small World Yoga

Fittest CEO: 1. Tash Weddle Providing training and education to improve fitness, nutrition, and health for over two decades, Tash leads The New Beginnings Center in helping women gain new skills and confidence as they gain new strength. 2. Ambrose Leburu 3. Alexander Kaufman

Best Bike Shop:

Favorite Fitness Apparel and Gear Store: 1. lululemon High-quality athletic apparel meets functionality and comfort. Whether you’re aiming to get sweaty or be stylish (or both), lululemon has plenty of options for every workout enthusiast. 2. Fleet Feet Sports 3. Athleta

Best Spa Experience: 1. Escape Day Spa For an unforgettable pampering experience, check into Nashville’s Escape Day Spa. Escape’s scrubs are designed to polish away dull, dry skin cells, and draw out impurities. 2. Woodhouse Day Spa 3. O.Liv Body Bar

Best Coffee Shop: 1. Frothy Monkey Visit any of Frothy Monkey’s five locations and you’ll find families enjoying brunch, an ideal date spot, the perfect place to sit and work, a business meeting hotspot, or great vibe for post-work drinks. 2. Crema 3. Fido

Favorite Hotel: 1. Thompson Hotel A Gulch resident, the Thompson exudes luxury and style in an energetic neighborhood. Sip cocktails at the rooftop bar or dine in the Marsh House with seafood-centric Southern fare. 2. Omni Hotel 3. Loews Vanderbilt Hotel

1. Halcyon Bike Shop Halcyon has been serving the growing Nashville bike community since 2008 and is committed to providing the best quality products at affordable prices. 2. Cumberland Transit 3. EastSide Cycles

Favorite Camping Spot: 1. Fall Creek Falls State Park Fall Creek Falls includes 222 campsites in five different areas allowing you to fish, kayak, or hike the many trails throughout the park while you sleep comfortably under the stars. 2. Montgomery Bell State Park 3. Cedar Creek Campgrounds

Best Veterinary Clinic: 1. Belmont Animal Hospital Belmont Animal Hospital believes in putting you and your pet first. Their passionate staff and steadfast mission to unite the city through a love of animals keeps their customers coming back. 2. Hillsboro Animal Hospital 3. Parker's Paws Animal Hospital

Best Pet Food Store: 1. Nashville Pet Products Opening its first store in Nashville in 1987, Nashville Pet Products now has five locations throughout the area. 2. Wags and Whiskers 3. Spot's Pet Supply and Grooming

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Nutrition Best Smoothie / Juice Shop: 1. I Love Juice Bar A staple in the juice community, I Love Juice Bar has an extensive menu full of juices, smoothies, and healthy shots to keep its customers feeling fresh (in more ways than one) with every order. 2. Urban Juicer 3. Franklin Juice

Favorite Brunch Spot: 1. Tavern A local “foodie favorite,” Tavern’s cuisine is fun, creative, and accessible to most any palate. Treat yourself to a scrumptious Red Velvet Waffle or get your hair of the dog fix with one of their Wicked Bloody Marys. 2. First Watch 3. Marche Artisan Foods

Best Food Truck: 1. The Grilled Cheeserie Created by husband and wife team Joseph Bogan and Crystal De Luna-Bogan, The Grilled Cheeserie is not only Nashville's favorite food truck, but it’s now a melt shop too. 2. Cousins Maine Lobster 3. Funk Seoul Brother

Best Healthy Restaurant: 1. AVO (winner image) Sourcing from the finest plant-based, local ingredients in the area, AVO has a well-rounded approach to health, wellness, and food. Try their famous Avocado Margarita with your meal! 2. EiO & The Hive 3. Sunflower Café

Jill Burns, Best Nutritionist/Dietician

Favorite Bar: 1. L.A. Jackson Located on the top floor of the Thompson Nashville, L.A. Jackson is an indoor/outdoor rooftop bar and restaurant with tasty treats and inventive libations. 2. Old Glory 3. Patterson House

Favorite Local Wine, Beer, or Spirit: 1. Yazoo Brewing Company A fan favorite in the area, this southern original brewing company has been bottling favorites like the Dos Perros and Pale Ale since 2003. 2. Arrington Vineyards 3. Jackalope Brewing Company

Favorite Grocery Store: 1. Trader Joe's Surprisingly, Trader Joe’s has only one location in Nashville, but continues to offer a variety of products and brands at a reasonable price. Now if we could just find more parking! 2. Whole Foods 3. Turnip Truck


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Best Nutritionist / Dietician: 1. Jill Burns Part of the FreeBird Tribe, Jill spends her time practicing Buti yoga, running intervals, distance, and climbing when she’s not consulting on nutrition. 2. Jill Merkel 3. Mckel Hill

Best Meal Prep / Delivery Service:

1. Paleo Works Modern Paleo for busy people. Owners Brian and Lisa Perry have been seasoning Nashville’s meal prep scene for many years, and they don’t skimp on their portion sizes either. 2. Eat Well Nashville 3. Golden Roots Nashville

photo by Bethany Rogers

Wellness Best Dermatologist: 1. Dr. Lorien Sites Dr. Sites joined Nashville Skin & Cancer in 2009 and continues to be a wonderful addition to their medical, surgical and cosmetic services. 2. Dr. Dawn Vincent 3. Dr. Jennifer Lee Dr. Peter Hinz, Best Chiropractor

Best Cosmetic Surgeon:

1. Dr. J.J. Wendel This award winning surgeon continues to shines in the Nashville market. Dr Wendel has earned numerous honors, recently being recognized as a “Top Social Influencer in Cosmetic Medicine”. 2. Dr. Brian Biesman 3. Dr. Nicholas Sieveking

Best Dentist:

1. Dr. Thomas Nabors Dr. Nabors is constantly striving to further his knowledge in the area of dental health. His Downtown Nashville office is both urban and inviting, making it a comfortable environment for his patients. 2. Dr. Clint Newman 3. Dr. Phillip Kemp

Best Massage Therapist: Best Hospital: 1. Vanderbilt University Medical Center A collection of several hospitals, clinics, schools of medicine and nursing associated with Vanderbilt University, Vandy Medical Center is No. 1 in patient care and facilities. 2. St. Thomas Health 3. Tristar Centennial Medical Center

Best Physical Therapist: 1. David Jennings Johnson & Hayes recently opened a third physical therapy location in Franklin under clinical manager David Jennings. It’s the place to go for injury rehabilitation. 2. Brandon Ellison 3. Heather Herod Cole

Best OB/GYN Doctor: 1. Dr. Allison Strnad Heritage Medical is lucky to have Dr. Strnad! Her compassionate approach to women’s care makes her a standout physician in Nashville. 2. Dr. Grayson Woods 3. Dr. Elizabeth Oldfield

1. Robin Frazier A licensed massage therapist for the past 16 years, Robin has a passion for working with athletes out of the Franklin Massage Center, working with triathletes, full and half marathoners, 100k trail and distant runners. 2. Jenna Wolf 3. Michael Jordan

Best Chiropractor: 1. Dr. Peter Hinz Dr. Hinz is one of the leading chiropractors in Franklin, committed to providing the highest quality care to his clients. He is an Eagle Scout, a CrossFit athlete, and is also certified as a CrossFit Level 1 coach. 2. Dr. Kevin Bradshaw 3. Dr. Rhett Bruner

Best Med Spa:

1. Nashville Skin Company No matter what your concerns may be, the Nashville Skin Company has a clear solution for you, by combining skin care, body contouring treatments, and weight management programs. 2. Elan Skin 3. Skin MB Medspa

Best Orthopedic Doctor: 1. Dr. Burton Elrod Practicing out of Elite Sports Medicine and Orthopaedic Center, Dr. Elrod and has a number of specialties including sports-related injuries and arthroscopic surgery. He also served as head team physician in the NFL for 19 years. 2. Dr. David Moore 3. Dr. Clarke Holmes photo by Bethany Rogers

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TITLE BOXING CLUB nashville’s #1 boxing club

FIRST CLASS IS FREE! SIGN UP TODAY AT NOVONASHVILLE.COM Studio Novo Nashville 99 White Bridge Rd #202 Nashville, TN 37205

Studio Novo Cool Springs 9040 Carothers Pkwy #103 Franklin, TN 37067

cool springs • green hills • midtown • east nashville

Save $10 on all spring training programs! Use Code: NASHFIT Expires 2/11/18

Yoga Half Marathon Full Marathon Beginner Run/Walk Trail Running and more!

Fitness Best Gym: 1. getFIT615 Be kind. Love your body. Sweat every day. And play with Emma. These are the kinds of things you’ll hear when you walk into Nashville’s best gym. 2. Fit Factory Nashville 3. Orangetheory Fitness

Trey Fitch, Best CrossFit Coach

Best Boutique Fitness Studio: 1. BeatboxFIT The Brentwood standout BeatboxFIT offers a fun, music-driven, total body workout. Owner, Ellen Joiner, says “I’m not here to make you skinny. I’m here to make you healthy!” 2. Studio 51st 3. FreeBird Fitness

Best Bootcamp:

1. Barry's Bootcamp Located in The Gulch, Barry’s intense treadmill and weightlifting combo help you burn fat and build muscle. Fuel up at their in-house smoothie bar or grab a fresh hoodie on your way out. 2. Burn Boot Camp 3. Shed Group Fitness

Best CrossFit Gym: 1. CrossFit Trivium CrossFit Trivium continues to promote healthy movement, a broad range of fitness, and mental resilience in a supportive community. 2. CrossFit H Dub 3. Nashletics

Best Strength & Conditioning Gym (Non-CrossFit): 1. Shed Group Fitness Now with three locations in Nashville, SHED has made a name for itself as a premium strength and conditioning gym. Rest assured that you’ll hit all your favorite muscle groups. Watch out for the Shredder! 2. Fit Factory Nashville 3. KrankFit

Best Yoga Studio: 1. Shakti Power Yoga Quiet your mind and open up your heart with a diverse collection of yoga classes in a heated space. Located on Music Row, you’ll fall in love with Shakti’s quaint rooms and warm smiles. 2. Inner Light Yoga 3. Hot Yoga Plus

Best Barre Studio: 1. Barre3 Nashville Sculpt and tone your entire body while stimulating your mind during this ballet-inspired workout. No dance experience is required, so bring your two left feet, a towel, and give it a go. 2. Pure Barre Brentwood 3. Neighborhood Barre

Best Pilates Studio:

average Pilates studio, working hard to give you a personalized fullbody workout with a wellness approach. 2. Studio Novo 3. Willow Pilates

Best Cycling Studio: 1. Verticity Verticity means the power of turning and local entrepreneurs Lindsay Brooker and Kimberly Novosel have crafted a community of riders and instructors that are both motivational and inspirational. 2. KrankFit 3. CycleBar Gulch

Best Boxing / MMA Gym: 1. Title Boxing Club The oldest sport in the world is new again. Combo your way through jabs, crosses, and hooks at four locations in Nashville. You’ll be sweating well before the “warm up” even finishes. 2. Pepper Boxing 3. HOTBOX Fitness

1. Marathon Pilates Serving two locations in Nashville, Marathon Pilates is not your photo by Andy Tomlinson

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Fitness Best Youth Fitness Organization: 1. YMCA of Middle Tennessee A staple in the Middle Tennessee community, the YMCA’s youth programs continue to offer a variety of ways to keep our children active and build stronger family bonds. 2. Moves & Grooves 3. Girls on the Run

Best Free Community Workout: 1. The Capitol Steps Workout You’ll never find James Crumlin without a smile on his face! Join him every Monday and Thursday (for free!) at 6 p.m. downtown at the Capitol Steps. 2. Wholesale Fit 3. Small World Yoga

Saskia Harmon, Best Barre Instructor

Best Personal Trainer: 1. Corey Grant Adams Corey has been personal trainig out of Gold’s Gym in Hendersonville for the past two years. His love for his clients and expertise in the industry make him a healthy choice for best trainer in Nashville. 2. Justin Crutchfield 3. Derrick Billups

Best Cycling Instructor: 1. Kelsey Cox A veteran to the cycling community, Kelsey’s loud beats and high energy keep her riders coming back to Verticity. 2. Tori Ross 3. Anna Perry

Best CrossFit Coach:

Best Running Coach:

1. Trey Fitch “If you aren't having fun, then you’re doing it wrong!” The owner of CrossFit H Dub has a knack for hard work, paying attention to detail, making his members laugh, and wearing tie-dye. 2. Mark Molinyawe 3. Evan Beach

1. Megan Conner Always beaming with enthusiasm and encouragement, Megan’s personal training will have you working hard and having fun while you do it. 2. Scott Wietecha 3. Devin Tolentino

Best Yoga Instructor:

Best Group Fitness Instructor:

1. Chris Byford A recent NFM cover star, Chris continues to make us laugh and smile as we bend and fold our bodies into intricate positions at Shakti Power Yoga. 2. Emmy Singer 3. Danielle Whitener

1. Tier Elera Tier is the owner and creator or Tier TIME Fitness, a power-driven, musical based bootcamp that will have you and your body enjoying the latest moves and tunes of urban, hip-hop, Latin and pop genres. 2. Ellen Joiner 3. Christen Jackson

Best Pilates Instructor:

Best Ambassador to Nashville’s Health & Fitness Community:

1. Bambi Watt Certified Pilates and Xtend instructor Bambi Watt is the owner of Willow Pilates Studio, one of Nashville’s premier Pilates studios for 17 years running. 2. Lindsey Rae 3. Dawn Doll

Best Barre Instructor: 1. Saskia Harmon Saskia is the current manager/teacher at Pure Barre Brentwood where she loves helping women stay fit and re-gain confidence in themselves. 2. Anna Perry 3. Suzanne Banker


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1. Kate Moore Continuing to be a lighthouse in the Nashville community, Kate’s crusade for individuality and charismatic attitude create a heartfelt environment wherever she goes. 2. James Crumlin 3. Kimberly Novosel

Best Local Instagram Fitness Celebrity: 1. Erin Oprea Our first issue cover star, Erin, never misses a workout. On the road or traveling around Nashville, catch her training with the stars or teaching a new workout on your local news channel. 2. Shawn Booth 3. Brittany Farrar photo by Jordyn Smalling

Best Long Distance Road Race (Longer than a 10K): 1. St. Jude Rock 'n' Roll Nashville Marathon and 1/2 Marathon As one of the most emotional days in Music City, Nashville’s biggest running event continues to promote a challenging race for an incredible cause. 2. The Harpeth Hills Flying Monkey Marathon 3. Tom King Classic Marathon

Best Triathlon: 1. Music City Triathlon Run by Team Magic, this triathlon will have you swimming the Cumberland River, biking on Ellington Parkway, and running through East Nashville. Not ready for the full? Try the mini. 2. Cedars of Lebanon Triathlon 3. Harpeth Hustle Triathlon

Best Trail Running Race: 1. Music City Trail Ultra Starting out of a family farm in Pegram, TN, this ultra is as difficult as they come, offering beautiful steep trails and stunning ridge-line views. 2. Rock and Road 3. Defeated Creek Trail Half Marathon

Best Cycling Event: 1. Verticity Rooftop Ride The Maniac Pack tops the charts again after a successful rooftop ride at L.A. Jackson. 2. Tour de Nash 3. Harpeth River Ride

Best Adventure Race: Kate Moore, Best Ambassador to Nashville’s Health & Fitness Community

Hardest Workout in Nashville: 1. SHED Fitness Hitting our chart for a third time, SHED’s Shredder will have you on the floor after your workout every time. 2. Studio Novo 3. Barry’s Bootcamp

Best Short Distance Road Race (10K or shorter): 1. Boulevard Bolt The Boulevard Bolt has now grown to over 7,500 participants and ranks among the largest 5-mile races in the country. More importantly, they have been able to donate $3,065,000 to the homeless community in Nashville. 2. Leiper’s Fork Heroes in Recovery 6K 3. Steps for Success 5K

photo by Kelsey Cherry

1. Nashville Spartan Race Offering a Sprint, Super, and Kids Race, the Nashville Spartan Sprint Race is a favorite amongst both new and returning racers with 20-23 obstacles over 3-5 miles. 2. Tough Mudder 3. Ragnar Relay

Best Fitness Competition: 1. Battle of the Barbells Middle Tennessee’s premier functional fitness event, Battle of the Barbells is a two day, individual competition not for the faint of heart. 2. Calisthenics Games 3. CrossFit Rampage Christmas Throwdown

Best Bodybuilding Competition: 1. Flex Lewis Classic Offering amateur bodybuilders and physique athletes an Olympian level experience, the Flex Lewis Classic is prepping for its seventh year of competition. 2. Music City Muscle 3. NPC Tennessee State

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BODYWEIGHT HIIT WORKOUT Perform each movement in each circuit for 45 seconds work; 15 seconds rest X4 (one cycle) or 20 seconds work; 10 seconds rest X8 (two cycles). Remember to breathe with every rep.


Jump Squat X Push-Up x V-Up Jump Squat–Keep your chest high as you drop your body to the ground. Push through the outer edges of your feet, using your glutes for elevation. Try to land softly as you return to your squat position for another rep. Push-Up–Form is crucial. Think of your body as one giant straight line with your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. (Variation: Knee Push-up) V-Up–Create a hollow body position to begin. As you reach for your ankles, keep your legs straight and squeeze your core at the top. (Variation: Single Leg V-Up)


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Tricep Elbow Drop–Begin with your elbows and forearms on the ground. Using your triceps, push up until your arms are fully extended for one rep.

Goblet Squat–Grab a weight that’s comfortable to perform 10 reps without losing form. Hold the kettlebell by the horns and sink into a squat, keeping your chest high. Knees should be out. Try not to round your butt or back as you rise.

Bicycle–While keeping both feet off the ground, “pedal” each elbow into the opposite knee as you twist, like a bicycle. Make sure you straighten the opposite leg and move slowly to activate the core.

Goblet Squat x Tricep Elbow Drop X Bicycle

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Jump Lunge x Dumbbell Thruster X Superman

you rise. With weight comes more power, so make sure you’re “thrusting” the dumbbells up as your body rises. Lower body and dumbbells simultaneously as you move into your next rep.

Jump Lunge–Focus on maintaining your balance while exploding upwards as you push off the ground, twisting each leg in the air. Each side is one rep.

Superman–While in a low plank position, extend your arms forward in a “Superman” position, one at a time. Activate your core by squeezing your abs on each rep.

Dumbbell Thruster–Begin with the dumbbells on your shoulders. Lower to a squat position then push them up over your head as


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Bosu Side Squat x Bosu Tricep Dip X Weighted V-Up Bosu Side Squat–With one leg on the bosu ball, take a step out to the side, toes slightly pointed out. Squat with your chest up, weight on your heels, squeezing your glutes.

the ground and push up using your triceps. Keep your chest open, shoulders back. (Variation: Move your heels closer to your body) Weighted V-Up–Grab a weighted bar or ball in your hands, and create a hollow body position to begin. As you reach the weight to your ankles, keep your legs straight and squeeze your core at the top. (Variation: Single Leg V-Up)

Bosu Tricep Dip–With the hands on the bosu, walk your feet out until straight, or near straight, for difficulty. Dip your butt near to

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Nashville // Brentwood // Franklin // Surrounding Areas Barré Barre

CrossFit H Dub Crossfit

Barry's Bootcamp Interval Training, Bootcamp

CrossFit Music City Crossfit

Blooma Nashville Pre & Post Natal Yoga Studio, Pilates

CrossFit Nashville Crossfit

BlossOMing Yoga Yoga Studio


Boost FitClub General Gym, Gymnastics, Aquatics


Burn Boot Camp Nashville Interval Training, Bootcamp

12South Pilates Pilates


12South Yoga Yoga Studio

Centennial Sportsplex General Gym, Aquatics, Tennis

CrossFit Silver Dragon Crossfit CrossFit West Nashville Crossfit CycleBar Gulch Cycling

Fit Factory Nashville Strength & Conditioning, Bootcamp


Compass Yoga Yoga Studio

getFIT615 Interval Training, Bootcamp

CrossFit 615 Crossfit

Gold's Gym Bellevue General Gym

CrossFit Barefoot Crossfit

goPerformance & Fitness Strength & Conditioning, Personal Training


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Habitat Yoga Yoga Studio Hot Yoga Plus Nashville Yoga Studio


Club Pilates Belle Meade Pilates

CrossFit Forte Crossfit

Ha.Lé Mind and Body Yoga Studio

Fitness 1440 Nashville General Gym

9Round Nashville Kickboxing Gym

BarreAmped Nashville Barre, Multiple Locations


HOTBOX Fitness Kickboxing Gym

Climb Nashville Rockclimbing, Multiple Locations

Barre3 Nashville Barre

Grind Fitness Personal Training, Bootcamp


360 Fitness Coaching Bootcamp, Personal Training

Bar Method Nashville Barre

Gordon Jewish Community Center General Gym, Aquatics

Fixinto CrossFit Crossfit


iLovekickboxing Nashville Kickboxing Gym Inner Light Yoga Yoga Studio Iron Tribe Fitness Strength & Conditioning, Multiple Locations

K) Kali Yuga Yoga Yoga Studio KrankFit Cycling, Bootcamp

L) Lercius Fitness Studio Personal Training, Bootcamp Liberation Yoga Yoga Studio Lotus Blooming Yoga Yoga Studio

M) M.A.D.E. Fitness Strength & Conditioning, Bootcamp Maeva Movement Pilates, Yoga Studio Marathon Fitness Personal Training Marathon Pilates Pilates, Multiple Locations MPOWER Performance Institute Strength & Conditioning, Personal Training Music City Boxing Boxing MUVfit Personal Training Personal Training, Bootcamp

N) Nashletics Crossfit, Bootcamp Nashville Athletic Club General Gym

Nashville Fit Body Boot Camp Bootcamp Nashville Strength Co. Calisthenics, Recovery Neighborhood Barre Green Hills Barre Next Level Fitness Personal Training NuPowerYoga Yoga Studio

O) On The End CrossFit Crossfit Orangetheory Fitness Interval Training, Bootcamp, Multiple Locations



Nashville residents are becoming more and more aware of the benefits of working out, eating right, and staying healthy. If the city’s beautiful and abundant parks, trails, and greenways aren’t reason enough to get out and get fit, then Nashville’s killer food scene is sure to motivate you to get moving. If you’re looking log your daily sweat sesh indoors, we’ve got good news. New boutique fitness gyms and classes are emerging almost every day. From bootcamps and boxing, to Barre and Bikram yoga, there are countless options for every fitness taste. But with so many options, how do you choose the best exercise program, studio, or gym that’s right for you?

P3: Precision Physical Therapy & Pilates Pilates, Recovery

Choose a program based on your fitness preferences.

PATHFINDERSyoga Yoga Studio

That new hot yoga studio across from your office may be all the rage among your coworkers, but if you don’t enjoy bending your body or extreme temperatures, why pay the money? Likewise, the gym across from your apartment may offer classes guaranteed to torch 1,000 calories, but if you hate high intensity workouts, why spend an hour of your day in misery? It is critical to choose a fitness program that aligns with your preferences rather than the latest trend. Otherwise, you might be setting yourself up for failure, as it is extremely difficult to stick with anything you don’t enjoy. If you find a method of exercise you can have fun with, you’re significantly more likely to succeed in reaching your fitness goals, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, and having a positive relationship with exercise.

Pepper Boxing Boxing Physiofit Bootcamp, Personal Training Planet Fitness General Gym, Multiple Locations

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2018 GYM GUIDE Poe's Gym Strength & Conditioning Pro Vita Nashville Crossfit Pure Barre Barre, Multiple Locations

Q) Quantify Fitness Personal Training

Studio51st Nashville Yoga Studio, Barre, Cycling, Bootcamp Studio Novo Belle Meade Lagree Fitness Sumits Yoga Nashville Yoga Studio Swell Studio Nashville Pilates

Willow Studio Pilates Work615 Personal Training, Bootcamp World's Gym Music City General Gym


C) CorePower Yoga Yoga Studio CrossFit Cool Springs Crossfit CrossFit Rigged Crossfit CrossFit Trivium Crossfit


YMCA of Middle Tennessee General Gym, Multiple Locations

The Crag Nashville Rockclimbing

Yoga Harmony Yoga Studio



The Dailey Method Barre


Epic Yoga Yoga Studio

Sanctuary For Yoga Yoga Studio

The Glow Room Yoga Studio

Be Simple Massage and Yoga Yoga Studio


Shakti Power Yoga Yoga Studio

The Pilates Garage Pilates

BeatBox Fit Bootcamp

SHED Fitness Interval Training, Bootcamp, Multiple Locations

The Southern Squeeze Strength & Conditioning, Personal Training

Simply Balanced Pilates

TITLE Boxing Boxing, Multiple Locations

Springtime Fitness Pilates


R) Results Fitness Personal Training, Bootcamp, Multiple Locations

Steadfast and True Yoga Yoga Studio Studio2 Nashville Strength & Conditioning

Verticity Cycling Vigor Bootcamp, Cycling, Barre, Yoga

W) Well Body Pilates Pilates


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CrossFit Wilco Crossfit


Fahrenheit Yoga Studio Yoga Studio



Iron Tribe Fitness Brentwood Strength & Conditioning

Spiral Spine Pilates Pilates



Neighborhood Barre Brentwood Barre

The Hot Room Wellness & Yoga Yoga Studio


TheSet Studio Personal Training

Optimum 650 Personal Training Orangetheory Fitness Brentwood Interval Training, Bootcamp


W) Whole Strength CrossFit Crossfit


Pure Barre Brentwood Barre

YMCA of Middle Tennessee General Gym, Multiple Locations



Real Change Fitness Crossfit, Bootcamp


Redline HIIT, Bootcamp

9Round Franklin Kickboxing Gym

Choose a program based on your location and its convenience. Even if a snazzy new gym just opened and it’s the epitome of fitness center perfection, but the proximity to your home or workplace means you are sitting in traffic longer than you spend working out, it may not be the ideal choice for you. Likewise, you may love a particular spin class in town, but if you have to pay $20 to park in a lot a mile away from the studio every time you go to class, it may not be the most timely or cost effective choice for you. It’s important to set yourself up for success in every way possible. Be sure to consider the location and convenience of every studio or gym before committing to a membership at one.

Choose a program based on price and your budget. As mentioned, new gyms and fitness classes are emerging every day as the fitness industry in Nashville continues to grow. For a time, new things seem chic, but they are also expensive. It is always good to try new things, but don’t break your bank to be a part of the next new trend. It’s great that the fitness center you love has state of the art equipment, complimentary tanning, green juices, marble bathroom floors, and steam rooms, but if you truly cannot afford the price tag that comes with all those bells and whistles, you may find yourself in serious hot water; and I’m not referring to the new Jacuzzi. Just like you wouldn’t order a dish at a restaurant you cannot afford, or sign a lease for an apartment that’s more than you make in a month, you should not be choosing a fitness program that will take a major hit on your credit card, because we all have other expenses. When choosing a fitness program, be realistic about how much money you are able and willing to put forth every month for a membership. We still live in the real world and you have to find what really works for you. After all, having a DJ at the gym might seem pretty cool, but being able to pay your utility bill is pretty important too. JA N / F E B 2 0 1 8 • N AS H V I L L E F I T M AG A Z I N E


2018 GYM GUIDE (Franklin map on previous page) A) Anytime Fitness Franklin General Gym AthletIQ Performance Strength & Conditioning

C) Chadwick's Fitness Strength & Conditioning, Bootcamp CycleBar Franklin Cycling

D) D1 Sports Training Strength & Conditioning, Bootcamp

F) Fit Studio TN Personal Training

I) Ignite Fitness Personal Training, Bootcamp Iron Tribe Fitness Strength & Conditioning, Multiple Locations

L) Life Time Athletic Franklin General Gym

M) MPOWER Performance Institute Strength & Conditioning, Personal Training

P) Prairie Life Fitness General Gym Pure Barre Barre, Multiple Locations


Franklin Athletic Club General Gym

SHED Fitness Franklin Interval Training, Bootcamp

Franklin Strength Personal Training, Bootcamp

Studio Novo Cool Springs Lagree Fitness

H) Half Moon Yoga Yoga Studio

H) Hot Yoga Plus Franklin Yoga Studio


T) The Barre Franklin Barre The Crag Franklin Rockclimbing

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TITLE Boxing Cool Springs Boxing

CrossFit BNA Crossfit


CrossFit Rampage Crossfit

Workout Anytime Cool Springs General Gym

Y) YMCA of Middle Tennessee General Gym, Multiple Locations


CrossFit Solid Orange Crossfit CrossFit VTG Crossfit



Fit Force Strength & Conditioning

3 Star CrossFit Crossfit

FreeBird Fitness Yoga Studio, Bootcamp

9Round Kickboxing Gym, Multiple Locations


A) Anytime Fitness Spring Hill General Gym

B) Barre Company Barre Burn Boot Camp Interval Training, Bootcamp, Multiple Locations

C) ChiroStrength Personal Training, Recovery Chonburi Muay Thai Muay Thai

Get Fit on the Go Strength & Conditioning, Bootcamp

O) Orangetheory Fitness Interval Training, Bootcamp, Multiple Locations

U) Unity Yoga Room Yoga Studio

W) War Room Gym Strength & Conditioning


body supercharge your performance

Residential Corporate Personal Training Yoga Group Fitness Nutrition Visit to view our member success stories and to book your FREE Transformation Session!

our trainers come to you! residential • corporate • hotels personal training • massage • group fitness • nutrition • gym design | 615.496.6165 | @cityfitconcierge

make the city fit


photo by Jake Matthews

1/11/2018 lululemon Run Club – Opening Run lululemon Green Hills



1/6/2018 Nashville Winter Wine Festival Marathon Music Works

2/3/2018 Never Let Go - Grip Contest Nashletics

1/7/2018 The Runner's Flow Compass Yoga

2/3/2018 Nashville Rollergirls Scrimmage-A-Thon The Fairgrounds Nashville

1/11/2018 lululemon Run Club – Opening Run lululemon Green Hills

2/17/2018 Broga Yoga Teacher Certification Nashville Strength Company

1/13/2018 Southern Squeeze Grip Competition The Southern Squeeze

2/17/2018 Music City Polar Plunge Nissan Stadium

1/27/2018 Nashville Weightlifting New Year's Open Nashville Weightlifting Club

2/24/2018 Nashville Brunch Festival Nissan Stadium

1/27/2018 NFM Best Of 2017 Awards Party CrossFit East Nashville


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Submit your events online at


2/10/2018 Cupid Undie Run BB King’s Blues Club

JANUARY 1/6/2018 Farm to 5K Two Rivers Park 1/15/2018 5K 4 MLK East Park Community Center 1/27/2018 Zoo Run Run Nashville Zoo FEBRUARY 2/3/2018 Cedars Frostbite Half Marathon Lebanon, TN

2/10/2018 Cupid Undie Run BB King’s Blues Club 2/17/2018 Hot Chocolate 15K/5K Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park 2/18/2018 Dry Creek Trail Races Ashland City, TN 2/24/2018 Cummins Falls Marathon, Half, 10K and 5K Cummins Falls State Park 2/24/2018 Winter Classic 5K and Fun Run Clarksville, TN

2/10/2018 Cupid's Chase 5K Shelby Park

JA N / F E B 2 0 1 8 • N AS H V I L L E F I T M AG A Z I N E


Local Spotlight

by Lindsay Miller

Jennifer Masley


ou may have already heard the buzz (pun intended) about the new restaurant off Charlotte Avenue in West Nashville, but what do you know about Jennifer Masley, owner and creator of EiO & The Hive? On a cool, windy day, we sat down with Masley to find out more about the lifestyle and background of this busy bee. After eating at EiO, it might surprise you that Masley’s career started in personal training, not the restaurant business. While always trying to live an active lifestyle, Masley prospered in high level triathlons. “People would just come up to me and say, ‘You look in shape. Will you train me?’ and from there it just became a business,” she recalls. As a natural entrepreneur, Masley says she is an “idea person” and highly motivated to turn her ideas into reality. Controlling her own schedule so she could spend more time with her children eventually led her to become her own boss. “Being able to work


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from home, be with my kids, and run a business was a nice trifecta,” Masley happily explained. After graduating with a BA of Science from the University of Maryland, Masley studied at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition. Spending time in both Michigan and South Florida before finding her way to Tennessee. Masley would take trips to see her daughter at Belmont University until her current business partners persuaded her to call Nashville her home for the last three years. In 2008, Masley and her family took a hard hit during the financial crisis, her husband, at the time, being in real estate. “We lost a lot over night and it became a sink or swim situation. I started to think about all the things I could do and was currently doing, but how I could help my family. We were surrounded by this hurricane and while my husband was in shock, my reaction was to turn on go mode.” Along with training, Masley was making a raw, organic energy

“If everyone ate and shopped within a ten mile radius, what a healthier world we would live in.” bar she called Pure Genergy. That same year, she took her idea to Facebook and was pleasantly surprised with the positive reaction. “People were asking me where to get them and placing orders. My kids were helping me make and package the bars to set out on our front porch. People would come by to pick them up and leave their checks taped to the front door.” Seeing a little success gave Masley the motivation to do more. She started making detox juices and smoothies, but even then, Masley wanted to learn more about her new craft and took steps to further her education. “I came from research based thinking, so it was all about finding the right resources to teach myself from every direction. Not just what I believed but looking at all angles to see how people view health in all aspects. I needed to know both sides worked before I could make an informative opinion.” By the fall of 2010, Masley was using social media as her main business platform. She had her energy bars, detox juices, smoothies, and was now teaching raw food classes. She had 300 customers rotating in and out of her 5-day detox schedule. She jokes, “I think at that point, I knew what it looked like, people coming to my front porch all the time, and I had to tell my neighbors, ‘I promise, I’m not selling drugs!’” During that same year, however, her husband [at the time] was diagnosed with leukemia. “I wanted to take a holistic approach, but they said we didn’t have time. He went to the doctor and was admitted [for treatment] that day. I’ve always been the type of person to take a ‘back to the basics’ approach, but there just wasn’t time. He immediately started chemotherapy.” “So the situation very quickly turned into, ‘Ok. How can I help him?’. I collaborated with doctors on what he could eat and how, but I couldn’t give him anything that would counteract the chemo. I had to know how certain ingredients affected his treatments. Then we learned his cancer was incurable without stem treatment.” Around this time, a woman named Julie Abraham came to Masley to discuss opening her own gym and wanted to integrate a juice bar. Masley reveals, “Julie knew what we were facing and that we were climbing out of a hole, but she was our angel for letting me lease the space for our juice business. After that we were able to open four juice bars in one year. We wanted to expand the juice business, but we all agreed juice needed food. This way we could expand in an all-around organic market.” “The juice bar became the conceptional idea to EiO & The

Hive. The idea was always there but in my head, I wanted a restaurant that exemplified real, true, health. I’m a huge proponent of local. If everyone ate and shopped within a ten mile radius, what a healthier world we would live in: Economically, nutritionally, relationship wise, the community. That is really where EiO evolved from.” I’m personally hoping the Charlotte Avenue location is the first of many EiO restaurants. Masley’s plan is for each location to be designed to fit the surrounding community, delivering the same raw, organic food she’s surrounded her life around. When Masley reflected on her experiences, she recalls, “It made me think a lot about community and how we connect with people. We don’t always realize how we are [making an impact]. Just listening to others and not rushing away because we are too busy makes for such a supportive environment. This is all a part of real health. It’s food, it’s friends, people, fitness, what we do with our time, and what we put our energy towards.” Masley has taken her ideas and become an integrated part of Music City’s growing health and fitness community. She is humble, adventurous, and willing to put in the hard work. “I have always felt so blessed that what I was doing to help support my family actually helped to save my children’s’ father’s life. But I still feel like I am riding this wave. But when the tide shifts, I’ll shift with it.”

Staff Favorite

Try Jennifer's Power Trifecta elixir for an immunity boosting, flu-fighting, antiinflammatory, wheatgrass shot. JA N / F E B 2 0 1 8 • N AS H V I L L E F I T M AG A Z I N E


Austin Fit Magazine

Get to know our partner (publication) in crime. by Ryan Freebing


e all have someone we look up to: a role model, mentor, or father figure. If you’ve ever traveled to Austin, Texas, you’ve no doubt seen similarities in our two cities. Austin is the Live Music Capital of the World. Nashville is Music City. But we also share another affinity: our passion for growing an active community. In a city known for its music, universities, and healthcare (sound familiar?), Austin Fit Magazine has been leading the way in keeping its residents fit, healthy, and active. AFM’s mission is just as clear as ours: educate, motivate, and inspire the area to live a happy, healthier lifestyle through a balance of health, fitness, and nutrition. We couldn’t be following in better footsteps. I was first introduced to AFM by my parents, who reside in Barton Creek just west of downtown Austin. After they had been sending me every issue for the last four years (thanks Mom and Dad!), I fell more and more in love with it each passing month. A lifestyle magazine, just like Nashville Fit Magazine, AFM releases content and stories on the local fitness community and has even spotlighted some Austin celebrities like Andy Roddick, Jamie Eason, and Aubrey Marcus. Their website ( hosts a number of health and fitness related topics including recipes, workout demos, events, wellness, style, and more. There is even a link to purchase some “Keep Austin Fit” shirts and tanks to add to your workout collection. We may already have a few hanging in our closet.


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Last year AFM celebrated 20 years in the publication industry. Sr. Publisher Alex Earle and his crack team—Weston Carls and Gretchen Goswitz to name a few—have developed an incredible platform and managed to become the No. 1 resource for all things health and fitness in Austin. We hope to do the same here in Nashville. If you’re ever in ATX, stop by their offices and say hello and be sure to check out some of their gym recommendations like Athletic Outcomes, Crush Fitness, CrossFit Central, and the Onnit Academy. We are truly grateful to have AFM paving the way for us fellow fitness lovers and are proud to carry on the tradition in Nashville! #KeepAustinFit


Profile for Xert Media

January/February 2018 - The Inspiration Issue  

Nashville Fit Magazine - Best Of 2017 Winners + 2018 Gym Guide

January/February 2018 - The Inspiration Issue  

Nashville Fit Magazine - Best Of 2017 Winners + 2018 Gym Guide