No Excuses: Monica Lynne keeps training personal
written by Sheila G. Miller | photos by James Harnois
Monica Lynne has no time for the next fad diet. Atkins? No thanks. Zone Diet? Nope. Paleo? Meh.
“The biggest thing that I believe in is also the biggest reason why I don’t have a better following,” the personal trainer and wellness coach said. “I believe in eating everything.”
Lynne, 47, owns Balancing Life LLC, offering help to clients as a wellness coach, personal trainer and nutrition consultant. She works as a fitness instructor at Mount Si Sports & Fitness and also works part-time as the member services manager for the Snoqualmie Valley Chamber of Commerce.
For those not fortunate enough to have workouts built into their workdays, don’t despair—Lynne has thoughts on that, too.
“Remember that getting the heart rate up every 24 hours is what keeps a metabolism revving at a higher level permanently,” she said. “So rising from bed even fifteen to twenty minutes earlier and doing a mini workout … can do a lot more than people realize.”
But she stresses that for fitness and weight loss, food is more than half the battle.
To that end, every weekend Lynne plans everything she and her family will eat from Sunday through Wednesday. That includes breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as snacks. “And then I commit to it,” she said. “I’m not one of those people who allows myself to say, on a Tuesday when I’m really tired because I worked late, ‘I could easily get takeout or take the kids out to dinner.’ Nope. If the calendar was for us to eat sautéed Swiss chard with onions and grilled mahi mahi, I don’t veer from it ever. That’s what is on the menu and that’s what I’m making.”
But Lynne doesn’t withhold all the treats—she eats dark chocolate every night and regularly drinks wine. “It’s figuring out your own moderation,” she said. “If you deprive yourself, if you say certain days you can’t have it, it’s all you think about.”
Lynne didn’t start out in the health and wellness industry. After graduating from college, she became an accountant. But it didn’t stick—and when the controller of the company suggested Lynne not laugh quite so much, she knew it wasn’t the job for her.
As she sought her next step, she routinely came back to her admiration for a high school health teacher who spoke frankly about sex education, and remembered how many of her Catholic college classmates were deeply uneducated on the subject.
She earned a teaching certificate from Central Washington University and began teaching health. Meanwhile, she was inspired by a trainer at the Yakima YMCA. “I thought it looked fun to help someone get over the hurdle,” she said. “To show them how to get their
Today, she teaches a group fitness class each morning and does every class she teaches so she knows how hard she’s pushing her students, then works one-on-one with a couple of nutrition clients. Lynne also runs online nutrition and fitness motivation groups. Her most recent was a six-week program—using a private Facebook page, Lynne provided a daily challenge or goal.
& nutrition coach
Monday: Lead 60-minute boot camp-style class, lead 45-minute core strength & stretch class
Tuesday: Lead 60-minute boot camp-style class, 30 minutes on Stairmaster
Wednesday: Lead 60-minute spin class, 15 minutes of ab work
Thursday: Lead 60-minute boot camp-style class, 30 minutes on Stairmaster
Friday: Lead 75-minute interval training class, lead 45-minute interval training and core class
Saturday: 60-minute run
Sunday: 60-minute run or 2- to 4-hour hike, depending on weather
• All sources of proteins (eggs, meat, fish, dairy)
• 2 fruits
• 4-5 cups vegetables
• High-fiber grains
• Dark chocolate
• The way I feel after I work out
• The way my body looks and feels when I work out consistently
• Being a great role model of fitness and excellent nutrition
• Nourishing my body and my kids so we all live long, healthy, disease-free lives
• Taking control over my external form and internal health
• Creating diverse and ever-changing workouts to challenge my followers
As a wellness coach, Lynne finds that most of her clients know what they’re supposed to do—eat healthy, get their heart rates up with exercise—but choose not to do it for “behavioral reasons.” Often, those reasons are rooted in an emotional issue like a parent who was tough on their weight or appearance, and that has hardened into a habit that’s hard to break.
Most people, Lynne said, want quick results—she’s focused instead on longevity. “If you can’t do it every day for the rest of your life, why do it?”
She’s also an advocate of self-care as a building block to success. “I really do a good job of making sure I take care of myself first,” Lynne said, noting she gets daily exercise, eats as cleanly as possible and makes sure to get eight hours of sleep each night. “I know if I’m taken care of and that I have those things done, then I’m fine with spending the rest of my day giving to others.”