When Jennifer Giamo’s husband unexpectedly walked out on her three years ago, she said her world was turned upside down.
“I had no idea he was going to leave. It was devastating and shocking,” Giamo said.
Unable to cope with her impending divorce, Giamo said she started engaging in unhealthy behaviors.
“I wasn’t eating, I wasn’t getting out of bed, I wasn’t leaving the house, I couldn’t work, and I was sort of a recluse,” she said.
These behaviors were ironically very uncharacteristic, given the fact that Giamo has spent the past 20 years in the fitness industry, inspiring and motivating others in health and wellness.
Fortunately, after a couple months, Giamo said she realized this wasn’t a healthy way to live.
“I started to think, ‘How can I be a model for my clients if this is what my life is?’ said Giamo, the founder of Trainers In Transit, her 9 year-old New York based fitness company, who has made guest appearances on CBS’s Rachel Ray and ABC’s Live with Kelly and Ryan. “So I slowly started getting back into healthy things.”
Healthy things, meaning meditation, yoga, mindful eating, strength and cardio training, to name a few.
About a year later, Giamo attended an event for divorced women, where she met Judy Herbst, Director of PR and Partnerships for Worthy, a New York based luxury jewelry marketplace for selling your diamond ring (which is a sponsor of Divorced Girl Smiling.)
“Judy and I started talking, and she told me they were interested in offering a wellness program on the site for their readers,” said Giamo, who holds certifications in personal training, group fitness training, and corrective exercise, as well as a Masters degree in nutrition.
“Worthy recognized that the women we work with every day are experiencing physical and emotional health consequences from their divorce,” said Herbst. “Jennifer knew the importance and benefits of exercise, of yoga and healthy eating, and that they were they way to combat the feelings of being overwhelmed and deflated. She knew how to push herself to get out of bed and get back to her healthy lifestyle. It made perfect sense for Worthy to collaborate with her.”
Together, Giamo and Worthy created Fresh Start Fitness, a wellness program to help women heal and thrive after divorce.
“It is the first online healthy approach to a simple wellness program that empowers and encourages women to move on, let go and love themselves,” Herbst said.
Here’s a sneak peek at the 5-step program, along with Giamo’s thoughts:
Step #1: Meditation:
Meditation helps to settle and clear your mind. Going through a divorce can cause scattered thoughts and a sense of feeling overwhelmed. Getting to a place where you can breathe and calm your nerves is important. In this step, I teach people how to breathe for relaxation and how to let thoughts come and go and not attach so much.
Step #2: Yoga.
Yoga embodies that meditative principle but now you are moving your body. It’s not super intense but it’s a good intro to making you feel better physically also.
Step #3: Healthy Eating.
I feel like women going through divorce go one of two ways when it comes to eating. They either stress eat or they don’t want to eat anything. So, I felt like it was important to understand how to balance diet and emotional eating.
In this step, Giamo offers 10 healthy eating tips. Here are two:
1. Eat until you are 80% full. It makes you aware that you don’t need to eat until you have that 100% feeling. It’s a way to maintain your calories and not feel so full and bloated.
2. Eat slowly: This makes you more mindful of what you’re eating and cause you to notice when you’re full. Ask yourself, ‘Are you really still hungry or are you emotionally eating?’
Step #4: Cardio and Strength training.
Each exercise in my strength and cardio workout is an analogy for those going through a divorce. For example, pushups make people feel powerful and strong. Burpees and jumping jacks boost endorphins so you can physiologically feel happier. Balance exercises help you feel more stable and maintain control, like you can handle anything thrown at you.
Step #5: Embrace the fresh start.
Combine as many components as you wish, decide what works for you and implement them in your life.
I cannot even count how many articles and blog posts I’ve written that stress the importance of physical and emotional wellness during divorce, and how yoga, exercise and healthy eating play such a huge role in coping and finding peace and happiness after divorce.
Girls, this is it! Fresh Start Fitness is a way to jumpstart your health and wellness in a quick, easy and FREE way!
So far, 1200 people have downloaded Fresh Start Fitness, and you can too! Just click here. Every day, you will receive one of the five steps.
“Jennifer is amazing,” Herbst said. “She brings a real, sincere voice and perspective of having been there, so she gets it and can relate in a very positive way to our community of women. The Fresh Start Fitness program is like a big hug of encouragement and positivity.”
“There is so much negativity around divorce, and feeling like you’re never going to come through the other side of this is very common,” Giamo said. “Fresh Start Fitness is an outlet. To know I’m making a difference is wonderful. I just love it.”