Jennifer Hanway‘s Real World Wellness talks have taken the MoveWith Boston community by storm. Whether you’re looking for tips on living life gluten free or you’re on the hunt for the foods and exercise regimes that will make your skin glow, she’s got serious expertise that you don’t want to miss out on.
What’s the first thing you ate this morning?
First thing that went in was organic low acid coffee. Following that was leftover roast chicken, avocado, and some spicy cauliflower sauerkraut.
What’s your favorite meal?
I love to eat. My favorite meal is probably sushi. Sushi followed by dark chocolate with a glass of red wine…but then there’d probably be a good steak in there with sweet potato fries.
What is your spirit animal?
My cat Riddick. He’s the friendliest cat you’ve ever met in your life. He was bottle fed, so he loves humans. He’s like a puppy: when I come home from work he greets me at the stairs and gives me kisses. He’s interested in everything, and I wish we could all have that. He gets excited by a piece of paper or a hairgrip or a paperclip. He just loves life.
What was your path into teaching?
I’m an ex-professional dancer. I had an injury that stopped me from dancing, and at that point I didn’t want to have anything to do with it. I was heartbroken. Through rehabilitation of my injury I saw an osteopath and then I saw a personal trainer, and I thought, “Actually, I really love doing this.” That brought me back to dance teaching, which I did for many years, and as a way to pay the bills I also started teaching fitness. I found that my love was for teaching fitness – that’s how I was able to impact people more.
I was very lucky in that I started working with some amazing places in London, where I’m from. I helped open the first barre studio in London and I worked there for a couple of years.
I moved to the United States two and a half years ago. The fitness industry is huge here, and I started working for Exhale in Boston before I got headhunted to go work at BFX. Alongside all of that I’ve always had my private offering, which is personal training, nutrition, and Bio Signature Modulation (more on that soon).
What was your path into nutrition?
Through teaching fitness I saw that there was a missing link where people would work out super hard without seeing the results they wanted. When I was working at barrecore, one of my mentors had done something called Bio Signature Modulation. That’s when you look at hormone balances and see how the body reacts to certain foods. It really brings nutrition and supplementation and lifestyle into a personalized approach – there’s no one size fits all, and I really love that. I went through it myself and I decided to go and get qualified.
Since then it’s been a huge passion of mine. I like looking at all of the different kinds of dietary dogmas out there and using all of them in my toolbox. I’m not paleo, I’m not low carb, I’m not low fat – I believe in getting as many bang for your buck foods as you can, which means nutrient-dense foods. When I work with clients one on one, I look at what suits them. What I eat is different from what suits you and what suits my husband…it’s really personalized.
Do you have any upcoming goals?
I recently completed one goal, which was to relaunch my blog. It looks way better than it did before. I’m also trying to move into the speaking and writing space. That’s a huge goal for me. And possibly a book somewhere in the future. I always have lots of smaller short term goals and then some big time goals as well.
What is your MoveWith word and why?
Passion. I don’t think you can stick to anything in life – whether it’s healthy principles or your work – if you are not dedicated to it. If you don’t get a buzz from it then you cannot be passionate about it. I find that when I’m working with my clients, if I can make them passionate about improving their lives through training, fitness, and nutrition, they’re way more likely to be consistent with their healthy habits and reach their goals.
What has it been like to bring your teaching to MoveWith?
MoveWith has been the first opportunity for me to move more into the speaking space and to teach in a workshop setting rather than one-on-one. One-on-one is great, but I find that a lot of people feel safer when they are with other people who have the same interests and the same questions and the same goals. Whereas it may be challenging for someone to open up to just me, knowing that I eat sauerkraut for breakfast and drink green juices all the time, being in a group of people with the same challenges and needs helps open things up a little bit more. It’s really building a sense of community. A lot of people that have been to one event have now been to many of my events on MoveWith, and building that community has been fantastic.
What advice do you have for someone who is looking to teach?
You have to understand what you’re letting yourself in for. It’s not a day job. To be in this industry you have to eat, sleep, live and breathe it. You have to be passionate about it and you have to live your principles without feeling that you have to be perfect. You have to know how to relate to people, because at the end of the day, our job is people.
What is your favorite teaching moment?
I’ve now had two clients who have moved into the health and fitness space themselves, and I love being able to spread the love and spread what I am passionate about. The fact that they enjoyed working with me so much that they then wanted to go on and impact other people’s lives – that’s huge for me.