NEW YEAR-FOCUSED YOU;  FIND YOUR FOCUS Food Focus – Our theme this year is New Year –Focused You. The focus-part can be taken how ever you choose and definitely includes focused eating. We understand that it is the combination of food and exercise that will help us be our better selves. In years past, we did a group “Clean Eating Challenge” however, it was never a popular choice either because of time commitment or perhaps cost or perhaps it is just too overwhelming to make such a huge change. In order to find better focus on nutrition, we need to know where we are starting from. Take the time to list out on a piece of paper on the left column what your current daily diet consists of. Then pick a few things to change in a right column. Don’t set unrealistic goals. Pick something that is manageable and easy to change. To help you, we are not bringing “experts” in the field. Rather real people that you know that are just conscious about what they eat and make it as fun as coming to the studio is.  Let’s hear from Rachel and Kelly on how they interpret “clean eating” and what works for them.


RACHEL LAUER: Food is a huge aspect of exercise and being healthy. What I’m putting in my mouth puts me closer to my goal of being a healthier, more focused Mom, wife, friend, instructor, or is it going to leave me feeling guilty, bloated, or crabby because I’m bloated and guilty. So here it is broken down black and white of my yes and no list…it’s simple…nothing complicated, no measuring or counting….just simple.

YES, YES, YES list

• All fruits

• All veggies (steamed, raw or roasted)

• All unprocessed meats (I try to only eat red once a week) (grilled, or roasted)

• Seafood and shellfish

• I personally try to stay away from gluten so the only grains for me are quinoa and rice but if you’re ok with gluten Whole grains are great

• Cage free organic eggs

• Again, I try to stay away from dairy but if your ok with dairy, Hard cheese like Parmesan

• Goat cheese, feta, blue cheese, Greek yogurt, organic milk

• RX bars are protein meal replacement bars (great for crazy mornings or mid day when no time to make a meal)

• Lara bars

• Kind bars

• Any raw nuts but peanuts (they are a legume and don’t provide much nutrition)

• Almond butter

• Air popped popcorn

• Olive oil, avocado oil, coconut oil (refined and extra virgin if you don’t want everything to taste like coconut or if your ok with coconut flavor get unrefined and extra virgin)

• Agave, honey, molasses, stevia are great sugar substitutes

• Water

• Kombucha

• Sparkling mineral water

• Wine

• Dark chocolate 80% and up (in moderation)

• Real butter NO NO NO list

• Processed anything (basically anything in the ingredients list that you can’t say DONT buy it)

• Sugar

• White flour (whole wheat, gluten free, almond, or coconut flour

• Processed meats like lunchmeat or jerky

• Anything fried

• Vegetable, canola, sunflower, peanut oil

• Any processed cheese like American cheddar

• Fast Food

• Soda/juice/lemonade/diet soda

• Any frozen dinners or pre-made meals

• Commercially prepared salad dressings

• White grains/breads

• Margarine

PORTION SIZES The other thing I try really hard to do is to watch portion sizes…. even when eating healthy it’s not a free for all…. I use my hand to do portions because that’s the right size for your body

1 cupped handful = grains

1 palm = meat portion

2 cupped handful = fruit and veggies

1 small handful raw nuts (one per day)

Thumb = tablespoon (fat serving size like nut butters or oil)


KELLY KWILOSZ When I think about the food I eat, I think about the energy it provides me. I thrive on being a busy person (work, Barre studio instructor, Barre student, dog training, being a mom and a wife). When I eat clean, I have non-stop energy and even wake up feeling refreshed (so very helpful with a 7 month old!). If I don’t eat clean, I will feel what is best described as a good hangover. Ugh, not pretty! I’m tired, drained of energy, have joint pain, feel bloated and poofy and even wake up groggy. Of course I want to eat more junk and the cycle continues. I am gluten free because I have Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and gluten does have an effect on me (gas, bloating, poofy all over).


• I snack a lot on veggies over fruit.

• I use whole milk Greek yogurt in my meals and for snacks too. My favorite things are overnight oats (can be made with instant oats to have a ready to go snack) and a spinach smoothie (has some fruit in it).

• You don’t have to throw out everything in the pantry, but just start with one or two clean meals a week and see how you feel.

• Every time you shop stick to the outer parts of the grocery store and watch your ingredient list.

• Stay away from foods that have crazy long shelf life, preservatives (hint is things that you can’t pronounce or sound like chemicals), sugars (so many forms) and try to have 7 or fewer ingredients.


Ladies, we have this at the back table at the studio. Fill it out. IF you want to have a one on one, let us know! We are here for you to help you be your better self!

Find Your Food Focus!


Sharing Barre Love,


Barre + Beyond is a boutique fitness studio created with a goal to inspire all women of all ages and fitness levels to challenge their bodies and minds, while forging bonds and friendships to help achieve their fitness goals.

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