It's been a long time coming for this spotlight. Jenny Kelley is the epitome of "Be An Athlete". Jenny started Crossfitting back in 2013 at CFJI and immediately worked to get better each day until she was dominating Rx workouts. Last fall she earned her Level I Coaching Certification and began coaching at CFJI, which she excelled at as well.
Always someone I look forward to seeing at the gym, Jenny is one of the friendliest and happiest members, and that is why I let her beat me in the occasional workout.
In November, The Kelley's will increase to a party of three with the addition of baby Owen. Next time you see her at the gym, congratulate her on the incredible honor of being called "Member Spotlight" and if there's time, tell her congrats on the incoming child as well. You decide which is more important.
Without further interruption... Jenny Kelley.
Jenny Kelley. It’s been a long time coming. From athlete to coach to soon-to-be Baby Momma. Tell us about the struggle of pregnancy and working out?
The struggle is real! A couple of months before getting pregnant, I was back on the train of wanting to sign up for local competitions. I was really enjoying getting stronger and making gains. I was also SO ready to be a mom! I found out I was pregnant towards the end of the open. It took me a few months to really get over the fact that “making gains” would need to be put on hold in order to grow this beautiful baby! I have done a lot of research and have been probably overly cautious when it comes to working out while pregnant. I mean, I stopped doing box jumps and double unders people! THE HORROR!
Come January 2018, I can’t tell you how excited I am to push that red line again and lay in a pool of my own sweat, wondering if I’m dying. Yup, that probably sounds weird. I’m okay with that.
You’ve been at the gym for a long time and then started coaching. Talk a little about that process and how coaching has helped you?
Yes, I came to the gym in May of 2013. It kicked my ass and I hated that I wasn’t good at any of the movements. Like ANY of them. So I had to come back and get better! Crossfit has been beyond humbling for me, but the process of learning all of these new skills and doing things I never thought I would do led me to want to give that experience to other people. I have coached a lot of youth sports, so it seemed like a good transition to make. Coaching has given me the opportunity to learn so much, and share that knowledge with our members. Crossfit helps people in so many different ways, and it is the absolute best seeing how it impacts all of our members, inside and outside of the gym.
How has diet and nutrition changed for you since joining CFJI?
Though I am no poster child for perfect nutrition, my lifestyle has completely changed in terms of nutrition. After doing a couple of whole 30s, there are so many foods/meals that Nick and I have never gone back to because we saw how terrible they made us feel. If you compared our fridge and pantry now to when we first started doing Crossfit, it would be a pretty crazy difference. I am pretty sure we ate pizza 1-2 times a week and a good chunk of our food was frozen/processed. We eat mostly clean food at home and do not keep junk food or processed food in the house for the most part. When we do go out to eat we are more inclined to indulge because we do pretty well at home. The cool thing is, this has led to many discussions on nutrition for our future kids!
With that being said, if you know me, you know I still eat plenty of dark chocolate and the occasional bowl of ice cream. And wine. Nobody is perfect :)
What keeps you coming back through the doors each time?
Number one reason is the people. I have always loved the family feel of our gym, and when I am away for too long, I miss everyone! I don’t like working out by myself. I need my peeps!
I also love the feeling of being the best and healthiest version of myself and that constant drive to achieve the next goal. I also like opportunities to beat Brian and Kyle in workouts, like twice a year when the stars align just right.
The beautiful town of White Lake, MI. White Lake is a suburb of Detroit. Though I would never move back to Michigan (because snow, ew), I loved summers on the lakes and winters on the slopes!
What do you like most about CFJI?
I love the family environment. I love the no judgement atmosphere, where you can feel free to be yourself. We even let Michael Gesmond be himself and that says a lot.
If you were to put one suggestion in that suggestion jar, what would it be?
Free pizza on Mondays like Planet Fitness. I mean, we do aspire to be more like Planet Fitness right?
Least favorite Lift?
Favorite member? Least favorite member? JK…
Kirra Borg, Keith Borg (JK, you know I love you Keith)
What are 1-2 of your non-gym related goals for 2017?
Make a baby (Pretty close to checking that one off)
Start a masters degree (2 classes down)
Keep the house clean (Failing miserably)
Word of wisdom you’ve heard at CFJI…
“YOU’RE FINE! YOU ARE ALL FINE!”
Words of wisdom you’ve given at CFJI…
“Get out of your head and just do it!” (Maybe? I don’t really know what comes out of my mouth!)
Baby Owen will be here soon! We all know “Brian” was your top three boy names, right?
Sorry Brian, Nick shot that down. I was heartbroken, obviously.
If you could do another job for just one day, what would it be?
Water slide tester
Traveling photographer (pending that I actually had any talent)
Who was your role model growing up?
I was definitely VERY lucky to have a lot of people to look up to. My biggest role model was probably my dad. He is a one of a kind, genuine person. He has taught me a lot about working hard for what you want, always helping others if they need it, and prioritizing what is important in life. And he is fun to hang out with and is not afraid to give you shit, even if you just met him :) He has prepared me well for being married to Nick Kelley.
One thing about me people would be surprised to know?
Hella good at arcade basketball.
What’s the most ridiculous fact you know?
Billy goats urinate on their own heads to try and smell more attractive to females. Something to try for you single guys…
What is the worst gift you’ve ever received?
Anytime I would get jewelry as a gift. Weird fact, I HATE jewelry. Something about the feeling of metal on my skin or something. I never got my ears pierced and I do not own a single piece of jewelry. I don’t even wear a wedding ring, thank god silicone rings are a thing now :)
Favorite song from your teenage years…
Black Eyed Peas- Let’s Get it Started
This was the song my basketball team entered to at home games in high school. It still gets me pumped up when I hear it!
Top thing on your bucket list…
Take Nick and Owen to Greece! I went when I was 19 to visit the homeland (Dad’s family is Greek) and our family house on the island of Ikaria. There is still so much to see in that area of the world.
String together 5 ring muscle ups. I was so close, now so very very far!
If you could eat at only one restaurant forever, which would it be?
Oku. I love me some sushi!!!