Drinking the “Kool-Aid”

Whatever Wednesday: Workouts

Does this look like Kool-Aid to you?

Does this look like Kool-Aid to you?

Coach-Melissa and I met while working at Starbucks, when she wasn’t a Coach and I wasn’t a Director of Faith Formation and Outreach and neither of us were entirely loathe to drink lattes with syrup in them.

I do seem to remember Melissa reacting with horror to the posted calorie count of whatever new food or beverage item Starbucks invented at any given “roll out” period, and my being completely unimpressed because I have never counted calories so I don’t even know what that means, and actually, at the time I was frighteningly underweight and so from that standpoint might have benefitted from a few more syrupy drinks. I also remember that Melissa started getting into running the Boston Marathon and my thinking I never could nor would I be inclined to attempt something so crazy. But I also think she might have liked white mochas or something. I liked specialised con pannas, where I would fill up the little cup with whipped cream and pour three shots of espresso on top of it (instead of the other way round) and then drizzle half a bottle of caramel sauce over that.

Mmmmm . . . healthy.

Well, it is pretty delicious.

But fast forward a few years and I got cancer, and then Melissa was diagnosed with MS. She got married. I got married. Other stuff happened. Then our paths recrossed last year when, fed up with the “marriage 15” I had gained and couldn’t get rid of, and with my newfound back problems, I accepted her invite to join a seven-week fitness group she was running for free. On the first day we did an Insanity workout. It was . . . insane. I couldn’t move for about three days, but I was completely hooked.

Well, almost completely. I wasn’t going to spend any money to buy the workouts for myself, of course, nor was I going to drink any of the associated nutrition drink, Shakeology. Stuff’s expensive. I could go to Melissa’s workouts when I had a chance, and do some Jillian Michaels workouts I had at home in between. We had some protein powder at home if I wanted to make myself breakfast shakes. I didn’t like the idea of some kind of processed product I had to drink every day–and if I was going to do that, I would just drink what we already had in the house, rather than wasting it. I lost a little bit of weight, but the workouts at home were not any more inspiring than they had been before I started going to Melissa’s group. I didn’t do them all the time.

About nine months later, though, I was finally free of my Tamoxifen cancer meds, had used up all the protein powder for better or worse, and in the meantime had learned that Shakeology is naturally sourced, and loaded with 70 superfoods.

That was a good day.

That was a good day.

Also, Melissa’s story was pretty compelling.

Because I had also paid off a loan I had taken out for seminary, I decided to buy a challenge pack–a workout system with a month of Shakeology and see what I thought. I chose P90X3 and Vanilla Shakeology, and after a few false starts (the almost broken arm thing and a crazy stomach bug), I did that workout and drank those shakes every single day and feel better than I ever have in my life. I’ve been to the chiropractor once in about three months, when before I was stopping in at least every two weeks. I no longer have exercise-induced asthma attacks like I used to every time I exercised. Oh, also? I used to get multiple colds every winter, and Paul got a few, but the only one I had was at the beginning of my Shakeology “journey” lasted all of three days. Now I’m excited to try PiYo, the new pilates/yoga hybrid workout that Beachbody just launched last week.

You have to know (you might know, if you know me) that I’m not a bandwagon jumper. In fact, as soon as something I like or enjoy becomes a bandwagon, it usually takes all my fortitude to remain loyal to that thing. (I confess a lot of times I don’t even bother, although I suspect that shows a lack of integrity.) So you also have to know what a blow it was to my skeptic’s pride to like the workouts, but especially the Shakeology, as much as I absolutely do. But I really do. So much that now I’m selling it.

Even if I weren’t selling it, I’d probably talk about it here a lot, because I am such a fan, but if you were to send me a comment or email me at jenn@thatsajennstory.com to ask me about it, I wouldn’t say no, either. I’m probably not “rah-rah” enough for this–when I’m looking forward to something I say, in monotone, “I’m really excited.” And I am really excited, but I don’t know how to be genuine and appear excited at the same time. All the same, I can tell you, I genuinely believe both the shake and the workouts are amazing. They’ve helped me too much and I’ve seen enough other positive effects, that I truly believe it can benefit other people, too.

Coach-Melissa made this graphic for me. Emerald only means two customers, though. You could be the third!

Coach-Melissa made this graphic for me. Emerald only means two customers, though. You could be the third!

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